Friday, July 22, 2011

So What's Up With That Writing Thing, Anyway

It's been a while since I've mentioned my novels.  Usually when that happens you can count on one of two things: nothing is happening, or something bad has happened and I'm too embarrassed to talk about it.
Lately it's sort of been both.  Not much has happened, which is basically a bad thing, and therefore I'm too embarrassed to talk about it.  BUT I have been doing a lot of writing, so all hope is apparently not lost.  An agent has my chick lit novel and I have sent out a few more queries, so we'll see.  I did get a rejection from an agent who said my book sounded too much like chick lit, which editors are still steering clear of.  This kind of annoys me since they have chick lit listed as one of the genres they represent on their website, but she was nice about it and I understand where she's coming from.  The thing is, CHICK LIT IS NOT DEAD.  When I sent How the Other Half Lives out in 2008, an agent at a large agency told me the same thing.  And yet, since then, plenty of novels that could easily be called chick lit have been published.  Chick lit novels from five or more years ago are just now being made into movies (Something Borrowed, for example), and yet agents and editors continue to say that chick lit is a dead genre and writers should move on to something else.
So after I got that rejection, I came across a fabulous blog, aptly titled Chick Lit is Not Dead.  I love that this blog exists in the first place, but what's even more fabulous is that the women who write the blog (chick lit authors themselves) feature tons of authors with new and upcoming women's fiction/chick lit novels.  And if you go to those author's websites, you can usually find out who their agents are.  I've discovered several agents this way recently.  So, thank you Liz and Lisa, for having such a great blog and reminding people that as long as women are writing about "high fashion and happy endings" (as they put it), there will be women who want to read about it.

On another note, I'm a few chapters into my new paranormal YA and loving it.  Writing it is so much fun, which is how writing should be, only I'd kind of lost sight of that with all that's happened over the past year.  I'm excited for Jack to start preschool just so I can have more time to write.  I'm hoping to write this novel fairly quickly, but who knows what will happen.  I'm also entering a few contests, and just writing this blog makes me feel like I'm doing something

A fun story: I sent the short story I submitted to a literary magazine a few months ago to my good friend LNRB, but I didn't hear back from her so I assumed she hated it, and I certainly wasn't about to bring it up.  Then the other night at dinner she mentioned that she'd been reading it out loud to her husband while waiting for the ferry in San Francisco, and a crowd of people gathered around and applauded when she finished reading it.  Now, LNRB can be slightly prone to exaggeration, so "a crowd of 25" may have actually been two, and that "applause" may really have been people swatting at flies, but I'm choosing to believe this actually happened.  Whatever the case, LNRB liked it, and that's good enough for me!

And on that note, it's time to get back to the novel.  Have a great weekend, everyone!


Lauren said...

I'm saddened by the thought that chick lit could be "dead"...what else would I read?

LNRB said...

Love you!

Mara Rae said...

I did say "slightly prone to exaggeration," in my defense. I need MB to weigh in.

Shauna said...

Chick lit is not dead! I loved 'How the Other Half Lives' when I read it a few years ago. Why do they say that? Like you metioned it's obviously still very popular.Confessions of Shopaholic movie came out in 2009, after your 2008 agent told you it was dead then. And what about the Sex and the City? Candace Bushnell started that phenomenon and it's still very popular today. I don't get it. Isn't 'The Help' considered chick lit? and it's already a movie too.