All the books that have won through today will be mailed out by Friday. Sorry about the delay
Sorry about not stopping, we had a nasty bug run through the family. Yuk.
Also the winners of this last week's giveaways:
- Greek: Double Date - DL Hammonds
- Dan Ehrenhaft's Tell it to Naomi and The AfterLife - Mandy Porto (My Little World of Books)
Agent Pitch Contest
Winner: Gets a query critique from Suzie!
When: Tomorrow, Wed July 14th. Begins at 91 EST, ends Thursday 15th at 9am EST
What: Leave your 140 character book pitch (children's books ONLY - including PBs, CB, MG and YA) in the comments.
Eligiblility: You cannot have an agent (obviously) or a book sold/published. This is for unagented/unpublished writers only.
Notes: It must NOT be longer than 140 characters. You can test this in Twitter or do a character count in Word.
Suzie Townsend, FinePrint Literary
*Comment on today's post and get an ARC of PERSONAL DEMONS by Lisa Desrochers.
Hey Suzie. Tell us a little about yourself and what made you want to be an agent.
When I first started exploring publishing, it was because my sister had working with McGraw Hill in the English textbook department. When she was working with them, she would tell me all about the job, and I found myself thinking about how much I would enjoy something similar. But getting into publishing itself was very difficult - and I wasn't sure which aspect of publishing I wanted to pursue.
I took an internship with FinePrint Literary, first thinking that it would be a stepping stone to getting a job in an editorial assistant position, but I just fell in love with FinePrint and every aspect of agenting. Luckily for me, everyone at FinePrint loved me too and offered me a job.
Tell us a little about your clients and their upcoming books.
I've sold six books now, which is very exciting, but I'll just name three of my clients' books which will be coming out in the next year.
PERSONAL DEMONS by Lisa Desrochers comes out 9/14 from Tor. It's the first book I sold, a YA paranormal romance about a girl who finds herself caught between an angel and a demon who are fighting over her soul - and her heart.
INVINCIBLE SUMMER by Hannah Moskowitz comes out April 2011 from Simon Pulse.
BELL JAR SUMMER by Arlaina Tibensky comes out summer 2011 from Simon Pulse.
In your opinion , what are some things authors should do to promote their books?
Having some kind of web presence is really important. A website with contact information, a blog, or a twitter account are all things I've seen that have worked well.
But people are different and what works for one person doesn't work for everyone so I think it's important for writers to try different things and find out what works best for them.
In terms of touring, it's really important for authors to make themselves available to their target audience. For instance, if someone is writing women's fiction that will be popular in book clubs, it's important for them to make themselves available to do talks with book clubs who are going to read the book.
In your experience, what are the top 3 query fails? Query success?
1. Sending presents. 2. Sending some kind of "I'm trying to stand out" query - like a Starbucks cup or something scented or an unusual package. 3. Claiming this is the next Harry Potter/Twilight/Da Vinci Code.
Successful queries tell what the book is about in a succinct and concise manner. It's so simple it's hard.
I spent time with you at BEA and shared your need for speed in getting the great galleys. When did you know you were a fellow Bibliomaniac? Bibliomania is an obsessive–compulsive disorder involving the collecting or hoarding of books to the point where social relations or health are damaged. One of several psychological disorders associated with books, bibliomania is characterized by the purchase of multiple copies of the same book and edition and the accumulation of books beyond possible capacity of use or enjoyment are frequent symptoms of bibliomania.
I hadn't considered there was a name for it until I read this question. But I've had symptoms since I was a little kid. Instead of picture books, my dad used to read my sister and I Lord of the Rings and as soon as I was old enough to realize there were different "editions" of the book, I tended to want each one. As anyone could tell from my TBR (to be read) room, I'm an avid book hoarder today.
If you could be a letter in the alphabet – what would it be and why?
Z. I'm not a hundred percent sure why. But it's always been my favorite letter. My parents actually spelled my name "Susie" when I was growing up, and I always wanted to change my name and spell it with a Z. And eventually I did.
If past lives really exist, what or who do you think you were in a past life?
I was a delivery girl in a past life. It is amazing how well I can go for a Starbucks run.
What is she looking for in children's books?
I'm representing everything from children’s books (chapter books to YA, both fiction and non-fiction) to adult fiction (speculative, fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction, and romance, especially paranormal). I'm interested in strong characters and voice driven stories that will keep me up at night. I also gravitate towards strong female protagonists, complex plot lines with underlying political, moral, or philosophical issues, and stories which break out of the typical tropes of their genre, like Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel series.
You can follow Suzie at her blog or on Twitter.
See you back here tomorrow and good luck!