From the brain of Angela B. Chrysler

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An Author’s Journal

An Author’s Journal

29 May 2015 – A Day In the Life of Me –

This was something I decided to put together today. 28 May 2015.
It is a complete step by step break down of my day. Or, I should say, a writer’s day only three days before a book release! I did this so others may see what a writer’s life looks like. :) And it was REALLY fun to do!
Enjoy! Okay… so I’m not posting it yet because it’s only 9:33 and I have the whole day to record still :)

Okay! Here is the link! Enjoy!

21 April 2015 – What is a blog tour? A blog tour is basically a collection of interviews on various websites stretched over a period of days. When its done, it looks like the author had a virtual book tour.In actuality, the author completes a number of interviews provided by bloggers and you schedule them to post consecutively. So when you advertize to your readers, it looks like day 1 you went to one site, day 2, you went to another site…ect

January 13 -Reedsy is a new company that is collecting the highest quality of editors and illustrators in the publisher market. For more details, have a look at this article link below.

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/digital/Apps/article/65169-reedsy-debuts-skills-market-plans-curated-imprint.html

December 16 – I located several news sources on Self-publishing: A link for marketing on Goodreads

http://www.novelpublicity.com/2012/02/how-to-run-a-goodreads-giveaway-with-maximal-results-11-tips-we-know-youll-need/

Check out Mark Coker’s book, “Smashword Style Guide” at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8814728-smashwords-style-guide?from_search=true

December 15 – Angela B. Chrysler viewed her book cover today for Dolor and Shadow.  She has reached out to editors and is preparing the book for publication on 1 April 2015.  For more information, visit www.angelabchrysler.com

December 9http://brennaaubrey.net/2014/12/07/one-year-no-regrets/ So much I’ve been doing.  Contacting artists for cover art and contacting editors for proofreading while preparing to finalize the last copyedit on my book!  http://ellisshuman.blogspot.co.il/2013/10/how-i-sold-910-copies-of-my-book-in-one.html

November 28 –  Another great link to another great site!  http://www.authorspublish.com/working-the-system-publicizing-on-a-budget-beyond-social-media/

November 22 – Brain to Books is happy to welcome Maggie Kelley to Follow An Author!  Entangled Publishing is preparing her debut novel, DATING MS. WRIGHT, which is with Ms. Kelley’s editor right now.  She is waiting for line edits, the galley, and the cover.  DATING MS. WRIGHT is scheduled for release on December 29 from Entangled Lovestruck (release date is subject to change).  You can follow Maggie at @kelley_maggie.  Visit her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/maggie.kelley.92 and her site http://maggiekelleyromance.com

Follow us on Twitter to receive updates on Ms. Kelley’s progress as she breaks into print within the next month!  As soon as Ms. Kelley’s, DATING MS. WRIGHT, advances to the next stage of publication, we will update the change and notify you via Twitter!

November 21 – I spoke to an artist today about the cover of my book to price how much a book cover would cost if I were to pursue this avenue.  By the end of the conversation, I was seriously on the fence to whether or not I should self-publish or traditional publish.  And then I found this website.  http://fantasy-faction.com/forum/fantasy-book-discussion/author-splits-with-tor-in-order-to-self-publish/

A short while later, I found this one http://www.barnesandnobleinc.com/for_authors/how_to_work_with_bn/how_to_work_with_bn.html

November 20 – Brain to Books is preparing to feature the debut author, Maggie Kelley.  Check back soon for details.  Follow us on Twitter or join our mailing list for updates!

 

This article comes highly recommended.

http://www.writersandauthors.info/2013/07/why-book-covers-are-so-important.html

 

November 18 –  Found a debut author, who may be available to participate in “Follow An Author”.

November 17 – Received a rejection letter.

 

Dear Angela Chrysler:

Thank you for sending me your query. I am sorry not to invite you to submit your work or to offer to represent you. The material just didn’t grab me, and you deserve an unequivocally enthusiastic agent as your advocate.

 I wish you the best of luck elsewhere.

November 15 – Found another website!  http://www.epicreads.com/.  I must set aside time tomorrow to look through epic reads!  Started up a Brain to Books group on Scribophile for Scrib members!  As always, Brain to Books is a huge advocate for http://www.scribophile.com and encourages writers in need of advice, support, optimism, beta readers, and writing companions to join!

November 14 – Wrote an alternate opening to Chapter 1.

November 13 – Submitted 3 more query letters.

November 12 – Agent X declined Angela B. Chrysler’s manuscript, Dolor and Shadow.  However Agent Y requested a partial manuscript of the complete 250,000 word fantasy, Lorlenalin’s s Lies, as of 10 November 2014.  Angela should hear back from Agent Y by 12 January 2015.

November 10 – Received a (what is the opposite of a rejection letter?)  not-a-rejection letter!

Hi Angela,
Thank you for your interest in [this agency] and in my representation.

I’d like to ask for a bigger sample. Please send me the first 50 pages (and an outline for the entirety) in pdf format to [my email address].  I like samples to end on a chapter break, so if it’s a little more or less than 50, that’s fine.
If you have any questions, please let me know.
I will be spending tomorrow preparing these files and sending them out.

November 7 – Received another rejection letter that made me happy.

 

Dear Angela,
Thank you so much for sending through the first chapters and synopsis of Lorlenalin’s Lies.  I enjoyed what I read and thought it had some obvious strengths. Unfortunately, however, we have decided that it’s not quite what we’re looking for at the moment.

Given the large number of submissions we have received, we are unable to give feedback, but I’d like to thank you again for thinking of us.  I wish you all the very best in your search for representation. I’m sorry not to be of more help in this instance.

 Kind regards.

 I think its time I format Book 2 for the query process.  It needs to be ready to go.  That is this week’s project.

 

November 6 – Conceived idea for “Ask An Author”.  Need to sort out the details before launching.

November 4 – All updates are scheduled for Mondays.  Interviews and author updates are an exception to this.  We will Tweet on Twitter when the featured authors on “Follow the Author” changes or when we post interviews.  If you are a writer, we strongly recommend you view our “Blogging the road to publication”.  In addition to the articles, we provide a list of links to other online sources.

Started making arrangements to speak at the local library in my town!  Eager (and nervous) to reach out to the community face to face!  Will keep you posted on my progress!

Found a new website!  http://www.publishingtalk.eu/magazine/  “The online magazine that helps you write, publish & sell your books.”

November 3 – Another awesome link!  This goes back to my days in 11th grade English.  For those of you who have forgotten or need to brush up…or just reminisce, here is http://thewritepractice.com/plot-structure/

On a side note, I am almost done with Ms. Beck’s interview.  (For those of you who are new, we are interviewing the USA Today bestselling author, Samanthe Beck).  I hope to post her interview this week.  I began two additional interviews since last night.  One with the young adult author, Austin Dewart.  At 18 years old, he has written ten books.  Also, the historian and bestselling author, Michael Jeck has agreed to speak with us.  All interviews will be posted to the site once they are complete (All interviews are being conducted via email).

November 2 – Another great writing source! http://writersrelief.com

November 1 – Two updates in one day!  I know!  I just found this site and had to share.  http://www.thepassivevoice.com/ is a writer’s blog writing for a contract attorney turned writer who knows his stuff!  Who better than an attorney!?  Passive Guy (or PG as he’s referred to on the site) provides a fountain of knowledge that puts the Library of Alexandria to shame.  Okay, so I’m exaggerating.  But not by much!  If you are a writer, PG is a must read!

November 1 – Today is the first day of National Novel Writing Month!  I want to send a loud GOOD LUCK out to all the participants of which, I am not one of.  This year, I am standing on the side lines, loudly cheering you all on and, hopefully, pulling together as much as I can to make your writing experience a little easier.  Check here for updates every Monday, which just became my blogging day.  If you haven’t yet, check out www.angelabchrysler.com to see my more casual side.

October 30 – Angela B. Chrysler is still waiting to hear back on the reading of Dolor and Shadow.  In the meantime, she has spent this last week connecting with friends and reaching out to the public to better build her platform.  No news yet on the querying front.

October 23 – Finished writing the plan for building a platform and worked on new articles for Brain to Books.  Working on query letters.

October 21 – BraintoBooks.co is live!  Linked Brain to Books with Facebook and will be working on a Twitter account.  Opened and linked an email address for followers to contact me.

Rejection Letter Received:

Thank you for the chance to consider your work. This isn’t right for me, but I wish you all the best of luck in your search for representation.

Rejection letter received:

Dear Author,

I greatly appreciate the opportunity to consider your query – thanks for sending it.

Alas, the query didn’t appeal quite enough to my own tastes to inspire me to offer representation or further consideration of your project. I wish I had the time to respond to everyone with constructive criticism, but it would be overwhelming, hence this form response. 

This business is highly subjective; many people whose work I haven’t connected with have gone on to critical and commercial success.  So, keep after it.

I am grateful that you have afforded me this opportunity to find out about you and your project, and wish you the best of success with your current and future creative work.

All best wishes,

I will be editing and resubmitting six additional query letters tomorrow.

October 20 – Held our first official meeting with the team.  Dukes and I reviewed long term plans, I began writing out a formal business plan, marketing plan, and financial budget.  We touched base with James Kermee and Tamara Wilson.

What does any of this have to do with writing and publication?

Everything!  Writer is only half art!  The other half is business.

October 19 – Drove to Ithaca, NY (Our wine country!)  and met up with my brother Adm Chrysler of Cornell University, who hooked me up with WordPress.  Thank you, Adm!

October 18 – Proceeded to build and develop the websites.  I just need to say, taking a crash course in business management and web design at the same time…was not easy.

I contacted Agent X regarding the status of my platform.  For the writers who need to know, the subject line was addressed “Follow Up and Update: Dolor and Shadow by Angela B. Chrysler” and I sent this out six days after the agent received my manuscript.  But, before you go following up with your potential dream agent, this agency urges their potential clients to follow up while their manuscript (ms) is being read.  They also have a two week turn around time.  So six days into the reading, for this agency, is okay.

Angela,
This sounds fantastic, thanks for the heads up! Dolor and Shadow is still very much under consideration.
Take care,

October 17 – I developed a design for Brain to Books and researched potential demographics, marketing options, and advertising.  I ordered business cards and, with a lot of help, support, advice, and wisdom from Angela Dukes and Tamara Wilson, we were able to develop a proper business plan from 1 year up to 5.

October 16 – I upgraded my blog to an author’s website: www.angelabchrysler.com.  Here, I began Brain to Books and began spreading the word.  I opened and linked my social media accounts and Dukes reached out to James Kermee, who will be assisting with web-design and social media.

October 15 – Still unsure if I needed a platform, and uncertain of what a platform is, I reached out to Angela Dukes for assistance.  We contacted Tamara Wilson (a close friend of Ms. Dukes), who generously took the time to answer my questions.  45 minutes later, Brain to Books was born and the three of us had a game plan.

October 14 -I developed an idea for my platform that would involve the public in the book making process.  And began blogging to document my journey from day-to-day.

Received rejection letter.  See below:

This is not for me, but thank you for the look.

Received rejection letter.  See below:

Dear Angela,

Thank you so much for allowing our agency to consider your material. Unfortunately, after carefully reviewing your query, we’ve determined that this particular project isn’t the right fit for our agency at this time.  As I’m sure you know, the publishing industry changes swiftly now, as do readers’ tastes and trends. As a result, our own agents’ needs shift and change, as well; therefore, we would like to encourage you to consider querying us with future projects as you may deem appropriate. 

Again, thank you very much for allowing us this chance to consider your material, and we wish you all the best in your publishing endeavors.

 Sincerely,

October 13 – On this day, I began designing my “platform”.  A platform is a writer’s term for “business plan”.  I also began researching the next stage in publication.  What I can expect from Agent X when he contacts me again.  I was uncertain if a platform was required for an author of fiction, but played it on the safe side and decided to build one anyway.

Submitted 3 query letters

Received rejection letter.  See below:

Dear Author:
Thank you so much for sending [this agency] your query. We’d like to apologize for the impersonal nature of this standard rejection letter. On average, we receive nearly 500 email query letters a week and despite that, we do read each and every query letter carefully. Unfortunately, this project is not right for us. Because this business is so subjective and opinions vary widely, we recommend that you pursue other agents. After all, it just takes one “yes” to find the right match. 
Good luck with all your publishing endeavors. 
Sincerely,

October 12 – Submitted 5 query letters.  Received rejection letter.  See below:

Dear Angela,

Thank you for your query. While your project does sound interesting, I’m afraid it’s not quite right for me at this time. I genuinely appreciate your email and wish you luck finding an agent who can successfully champion your work.

All best,

At 10:00 P.M. I received a response from Agent X, who had received my 24th query letter on the 11th of October.   He sent me this reply:

Hi Angela,

I’d be delighted to take a look at the full manuscript. Will you please send it to me as a microsoft word doc?

All the best,

[Agent X]

To date, I have five “rejections”.  This is the query letter that Agent X responded to.

 Dear [Agent X]:

 I am currently seeking representation for Dolor and Shadow, which is an upmarket fantasy of 133,000 words and depicts the Viking Era from the elves’ point of view. Inspired by my studies in medieval European history, historical linguistics, and theology, Dolor and Shadow presents a unique interpretation of the Celtic and Nordic myths while braiding together the historical events of 995 A.D. This is a simultaneous submission.

Kallan’s quest to avenge her father, lands her in the mountains of Norway with her father’s murderer, Rune.  Forced to brave  the uncharted terrain of Ancient Scandinavia, Rune and Kallan must set aside their differences to band together.  While battling their prejudices — and each other — they begin to uncover the truth beneath a web of lies.

 In 2009, after completing two courses through Long Ridge Writer’s Group, my articles appeared in the May through November issues of Kritter Kronickles Pet Magazine. Although I have few credentials, I maintain a professional and dedicated work ethic. I thrive on self-motivation and have committed the last five years to the research and writing of Dolor and Shadow and its sequel, Lorlenalin’s Lies, both of which were written simultaneously and are complete.  I can be reached at [myemailaddress@someserver.com] or my cell 123-456-7890.  Thank you for your time.

 Sincerely,

  Angela B. Chrysler

[My full street address]

October 11 – This is the rejection letter I received from Agent W, who had emailed me on October 9.  See below:

Dear Angela,
Thank you for your interest in the [an agency].  Unfortunately, this is going to be a pass.   Even with decreasing the word count, it is still a hefty book.  The publishing industry is very subjective, so what may not work for us could be just what another agency is looking for. So we encourage you to continue your pursuit of publication. 
In your search for the perfect agent you may want to check out Chuck Sambuchino’s Guide to Literary Agents blog. We have found it to be a great resource for finding new agents that are looking to build their lists. 
Thank you for considering us for your work and we wish you great success with your writing career.
All the best,

I submitted 6 more query letters..including the letter that would earn a response from Agent X.

October 10 – Submitted 2 query letters

October 9 – Received 3 rejections and 1 reply from an agent.  I rewrote the query letter and submitted 3 more then rewrote it again and submitted 3 more.  Remember.  For every “no,” I submitted 3 more.

Received Rejection Letter:

Thank you for your query. I am unfortunately unable to respond personally to every query, but if I am interested in reading more of your work I will respond within five weeks. If you do not hear from me in that time, then I have decided I am not the right agent to represent your work.

Thank you and best wishes,

Received rejection letter:  See below:

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query and for letting me have a look at your work. I apologize for the impersonal nature of this email but I receive so many queries that it makes it impossible for me to respond personally to each one. Thank you for your patience.

Unfortunately, I don’t feel that this is right for me, so I’m passing. Just because I wasn’t quite drawn in, however, doesn’t mean there isn’t another agent out there who will love it. I encourage you to continue to submit elsewhere.

Thanks again for thinking of me, and I wish you all the best in your endeavors.

Sincerely,

Received rejection letter.  See below:
Dear Angela Chrysler,
Thank you for sending me your query. Unfortunately this does not seem right for me and so I will pass. I wish you the best.
Sincerely,
Received this reply from an agent:
Dear Angela,
Thank you for your interest in [this agency].  You have an interesting premise and intriguing opening pages.  However, your word count is astronomical, 2.5 times the average fantasy.  Have you considered splitting this up into two different books?
All the Best,
[Agent W]
This was my reply:
Dear [Agent W]:
Yes, I have contemplated breaking Lorlenalin’s Lies into two parts.  I’ve been worried about the word count ever since I exceeded 150,000 words.  Ending the book after Chapter 30 would bring the word count, down to about 110,000 words; but I would prefer ending Lorlenalin’s Lies on Chapter 40 at 140,000 words.  There, the story ends on a cliffhanger and would kick-off book 2 nicely.  It would also leave 110,000 words for book 2.
 
Thank you for your interest and prompt reply.  I cordially await your response.
 
Sincerely,
 
This email was very helpful.  The response I received confirmed that I had finally found the right query letter and, sure enough, from this point on, the replies became more personal and encouraging.  I also took her advice and adjusted my format. 
The 250,000 word manuscript (about 1,000 pages depending on format) was now a 2 book series.  I took the day to close up the ending of book 1 and format the opening of book 2.  I also had to compose a new title.  I settled on Dolor and Shadow.  The query letter I sent to Agent W became my future template.  Agent W would eventually pass on my book.  See the October 11th entry.

October 8 – Rewrote query letter and submitted 4 more

October 6 – Rewrote query letter and submitted 2 more

I filled my time with D&D to help distract and settle my nerves.  This is where the waiting game begins.  I didn’t want to send out too many query letters at one time and miss an opportunity with a prime agency because of a novice query letter mistake.  Live and learn…and so I did.

September 28 – Submitted query letter

September 16 – Rewrote query letter and submitted 1 more.

September 15 – Received rejection letter and I decided, for every rejection letter received, I would submit three new query letters.  I also decided to rewrite the query letter each time I sent out a new collection.  This way, I could see if a particular format worked.  See rejection letter below:

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query! Unfortunately, it’s not quite the right fit for 
me, I’m afraid.

I’m sorry not to have better news. As you know, publishing is a highly 
subjective business: what may not be the best fit for me may be exactly 
what another agent is looking for, so don’t give up!

I wish I had the time to offer individual and constructive criticism for 
every query, but that would be overwhelming, hence this form letter. Rest 
assured, I read your query myself and gave it my careful attention.

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to get to know you and your work. 
I wish you the best of success with your current and future creative 
endeavors.

Sincerely,

August 20 – Submitted two query letters

August 1 – Submitted one query letter

July 17 — I opened up an account on Scribophile.com and submitted Chapter 1 through Chapter 6 for editing to the public.

June — Final grammatical edit of Lorlenalin’s Lies completed at 250,000 words and 70 chapters.  I passed the book off to three more beta readers who found almost no errors.

May — Still editing the grammar…

April — One of the beta readers pointed out many grammatical errors…enough to convince me that I needed to go back to school.  I signed onto Dailygrammar.com and completed all assignments in 1 week…all 440 assignments and 88 quizzes…in one week.  It was a long week.  I completed 50 lessons and 10 quizzes a day and was pushing 14-hour days that week.  When I finished, I had a complete understanding of advanced grammar and punctuation.  The course is equivalent to 2 English grammar college courses.  It is one of the most impressive feats I have ever accomplished.  Yes, I am proud.  When I was done, I re-edited my book…all 250,000, words.

2014

2013 June 7 – While researching the terrain of Norway through Google, I named the little, yellow guy.

“You know you’ve been on Google Maps too long when you name the little yellow guy. This is STEVE! Say hello to Steve everyone! Steve doesn’t say much, but he LOVES to travel!” – Posted to my facebook page.

2013 March — Beta Readers assigned.  Three of whom I had not even met and two were attorneys; a male and a female.

 

2013 — I changed the title…again.  The Gifts of Asgard became Book 1 of The Tales of the Drui: Lorlenalin’s Lies.  Still googling Norway.      

 

2012 – Edited, revised, and rewrote and spent this year researching the geography of Norway…Google and I became very close.

2011 – Added an entire section to the story that boosted the word count from 97,000 words to 150,000, which is more acceptable for a fantasy novel.

2010 — I changed the title from The King’s Warrior to The Gifts of Asgard and changed the genre from romance to fantasy.

 

2009 February – I attended Long Ridge Writer’s Group…again.  I started re-writing The King’s Warrior.  This would be the first of 4 re-writes.

2009 February — The King’s Warrior is finished.  I began submitting to agents via snail mail.  One agent took the time to tell me that, despite loving my writing style, my characterization needed work.  I thanked her and realized something.  If I didn’t understand what she meant by “characterization”, I needed to go back to school…and did.

 

2008 November — Began writing The King’s Warrior.  I count this month as the starting date for this project.

2008 April — Outline and research for The King’s Warrior was started.

 

2007 February — The idea for The King’s Warrior is conceived (yes…the title was BAD.  I was starting out.  Be thankful you didn’t have to read it.  Cut me some slack.)

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