I'm amazed at the great turn-out for the Great Query Contest. Now that I've gotten all of the critiques out, the question is:
First: Thank you!
My thanks to everyone who braved the teeth and claws of a public query critique. I hope that I gave you some helpful notes.
Second: Keep in Touch.
I want to know how you're doing. Please comment or email me when you hit major milestones like getting an agent and signing a book deal. I also want to offer this forum to you as a way to get the word out when your book is released. I'll be happy to review your book here at the Bear when it's published. I'll also be happy to host an ARC giveaway, guest blog, etc. to help you out.
Third: Publishing Opportunity.
Those of you who have complete YA paranormal, fantasy, or sci-fi books, my publisher, Spencer Hill Press, is currently accepting queries from both agented and unagented authors. Full disclosure: it's a very small outfit (just three part-timers) and we're still working on expanding distribution. In addition, I'm going to be editing at least one of the new projects in the coming year. Want it to be yours? Submit through the contact form.
Fourth: Writing Seminar.
All this critiquing has gotten me interested in offering a writing seminar. I think I'll keep it small (6-16 people), so writers can get more individual attention. It'll be here in New Hampshire on two consecutive Saturdays (probably 10am-5pm-ish) in April or May, 2011. I checked into a location in Concord, NH that's both affordable and within walking distance of the bus from Boston's South Station. The focus would be on developing vibrant characters and narrative voice, and the cost would be in the $300-$350 range, although blog followers, students, and early-birds would all get discounts that would bring the cost down into the $200-$300 range. If you're interested, please email me, and I'll keep you in the loop as things develop.
Fifth: The Rest of the Contest.
Let's all take a breather from queries for the week before we start:
Everyone who queried in the first round is eligible to re-submit his/her queries by email. Please get your revised queries to me by Midnight on Saturday, October 30th. I'll post them EXACTLY AS I RECEIVE THEM, (from the "Dear Ms. Agent" to the "Sincerely, Moi"), so please format them appropriately for an e-query. You do not have to include your name or contact info, though. I'll set up a poll, and voting will start on Monday, November 1st through Sunday, November 7th. I'll ask people to vote for the book they'd most like to read. Feel free to promote the heck out of this and get all your blog followers and Facebook friends to vote. The winner will receive a 30-page partial critique.
Random legalese: By sending me your entry, you agree that I may re-post your query (in whole or in part) here at the Disgruntled Bear. I'm also allowed to brag about how I was reading your work before you got famous.