Sunday, April 10, 2011

Credentials??



Has anyone written had to separate their credentials from their query letter? Cause honestly, I don't have many. So, what do you think counts as credentials when querying an agent? Anything that's impressive, or things that simply pertain to writing? Would my writing classes pertain to writing? I wouldn't be saying "I'm qualified to write this book because I have taken these classes". Instead I would be saying "I've taken these writing classes--they simply add to my knowledge" .....???

7 comments:

  1. I've spoken with a professor and he said to just drop the credentials, but it also poses a bit of a danger since agents might wonder why you aren't saying anything about yourself. If you have published short stories in magazines or won contests, then those are pretty noteworthy. If nothing, then I think the most basic thing should be "I am a college student and I have not yet been published." Agents SHOULD realize that everyone has to start somewhere -_-

    I've also read from other agents that they aren't interested if your whole family and critique group say that your story is the best thing they've ever read, or how many writing classes you've taken. I think the whole "I'm best qualified to write this" goes more on a personal level, like perhaps you HAVE encountered pirates or lived on the high seas for however long, or maybe simply because you're a young adult writer writing for young adults and you can understand what kinds of stories your audience would want to read.

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  2. Good advice! I just wondered, I was going to just not include a credentials page...but I was afraid they'd be suspicious. I've been published once, lol, and haven't tried since really because most magazines, you have to write short stories, that's hard for me. so I just went for novels.

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  3. I wonder why they would be suspicious in the first place. The most obvious reason someone wouldn't include their credentials is because they HAVEN'T been published before, and it's not like that should really be a big shocker. Meh, I dunno.

    I'm also more of a novel writer and not much a short story writer. I like building worlds and characters, and contests for short stories often have a large enough word count to allow that. It's really a craft all on its own... In fact, I took a short story fiction writing class and most of the students were writing summarized pieces of works that SHOULD'VE been longer, and because of that they weren't strictly short stories.

    But anyway, yes, you should probably include that you've been published and how :D

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  4. lol! I don't know!! I always think people will think things they never think...ahahahaha. Does that makes sense?
    Yeah, I don't know...it's hard to just end a story. I guess I don't understand how to condense a story where there's no loose-ends. I guess it's just a flash in time type of story?

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  5. I think I get what you mean? :D

    The "best" standalone short stories would probably be best described as "a flash in time of these characters lives." I feel like there's a lot more mystery surrounding these characters, like the author ought to know more about the characters in a short story than they'd ever let down on page. I feel like novels, on the other hand, allow for that development that we wouldn't otherwise see in a short story.

    In my fiction writing class, we were studying Flannery O'Connor, and most of her short stories were flashes in time of the characters' lives, and though it felt like there were more to the characters, the stories themselves had strong standalone messages.

    ...Haha I always feel like I write too much back to you :D

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  6. Oh my gosh! No! Don't feel like that!! I def enjoy it!!!
    In my Philosophy and Literature class, we read Flannery O'Conner--A Good Man is Hard to Find...man, it was just sad. I guess it's easy to write something like that.

    Flannery O'Conner also brings up an odd idea about society as well as J.K. Rowling--both of their names are not gender specific. Which is another part of the whole business aspect of selling books.

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  7. I don't understand why gender has to be an issue when it comes to deciding which books one is willing to read. I mean, I can understand if the author is like a neo-Nazi or something, but gender, really?

    I have heard of this issue before, and it kinda makes me want to change my pen name, but I've grown far too fond of it, haha.

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