A big thanks to Precy Larkins for sharing her story. Our husbands must be cut from the same cloth, because mine refuses to get excited anymore. When I give him any news he rolls his eyes and says he's not getting his hopes up. Now I can make him read your story and say na-na to him. It does happen.
For me, I didn’t get The Call, but The Email.
Rewind back to May 3rd. I woke up early because I had a doctor’s appointment that morning. The day before, I’d received great feedback on my query so I decided to send out two, just to test it out. While waiting at my OB’s clinic, I checked my email because I’m highly neurotic like that. Or maybe it was the pregnancy hormones making me extra neurotic. Anyway, there was a partial request sitting in my inbox. I might have fist bump my husband, who was there waiting in the lobby with me. Since he’s not a writer, he merely smiled. Sheesh.
The next morning, I woke up two hours earlier than my wake up time. Are you beginning to see a pattern here? Sans eyeglasses or contact lenses, I squinted at my iPhone screen just to see if there was an email secretly delivered while I was asleep.
There was one. And it went something like this: Your query intrigued me so much that I read your partial first thing this morning. Would you please send me the full manuscript?
I grabbed my glasses and headed downstairs to the kitchen. Yes, I confess: I write on my kitchen table. Ever since I got a laptop, the kitchen has become my office. Which is really nifty since, you know, snacks are within reach…but that’s for a different story. Onward.
I sent the full with fingers crossed. In the meantime, another full request came in my inbox. It was shaping up to be a very good day. But then it was the weekend, and the crickets learned a new song in my inbox. My eye probably twitched a lot during that time. Hm. Can’t remember.
Tuesday! Tuesday came (and we’ll just skip over Monday because nothing ever happened that day, except for swollen ankles) and this time, I woke up four hours earlier than usual. I think I was dreaming about emails and possibly zombies along with them. Anyway, I of course did the most sensible thing to do when one’s groggy and highly disoriented from having just woken up from a nightmare: I checked my email.
It was The Email. The one that said I’m no idiot and someone other than my mother likes my book. No, wait, the word was LOVE. Someone loves my book. All of it. It wasn’t a “hey, I like your book but I’ll like it better if you’ll just twist a few scenes around” kind of like. It was a “I was totally captivated (CAPTIVATED!) from beginning to end”.
I waddled down the stairs to get to my laptop (because, you know, I needed to see it bigger and make sure that I wasn’t hallucinating from squinting too much at that tiny phone screen). It was real. And then I panicked. I didn’t even have a list of questions handy! I thought I would be waiting for months before anyone with my full sub gets back to me with their feedback. This is where your writing friends come in. This is where you’ll send them a freaking-out email with Help Me! stickers plastered on every space of your letter, and they’ll respond back with much squeeing and a handy-dandy list of what to ask Fabulous Agent Who Loves Your Book.
Because Fabulous Agent is based in Germany, there was no The Call, but lots more of The Email going back and forth. After letting the other agents who had my query and full submissions know I had an offer of representation, I had to wait again. Ten long days with six more fulls out. Eventually, the deadline came, and with all loose ends tied and out of the way, I was able to type those wonderful words to Fabulous Agent: I accept your offer of representation.
This was my first ms to query, and I landed an agent within six weeks! I couldn’t believe it. Still can’t believe it sometimes. J
Precy Larkins is a mother by day, a dreamer by night, and a writer in between. She grew up in the Philippines, a country steeped in superstitions and rumors of enchanted beings roaming the woods. She now lives in Utah with her husband and three kids. She’s represented by the lovely Julia A. Weber of J. A. Weber Literaturagentur GmbH.
Precy maintains a blog and a Twitter account, where her friends know her affectionately by her nickname, Cherie. Her Young Adult Contemporary Fantasy novel, HIDDEN, is a story of a girl battling demons in her head only to find out they are real. With dark magick and soul-suckers on the loose, and a boy who can’t be trusted, she must use her visions to survive the world hidden beyond her own.