Di Brown voted - did you? @1Nixie@kate_mckean When you see "nominated/didn't win" awards listed - is that a positive ("shows possibility") or a negative ("didn't win - leave it off the list") as you assess whether to ask for more?
Awards never affect my decision whether or not to ask for more. They're icing. I guess if you won a Pulitzer/Nobel/Congressional Medal of Honor that would be different.
Katie @katiedegilio@kate_mckean When it comes to YA books, how does the rating (like pg-13) work? I know with movies pg-13 is only allowed one F word, but I've seen a lot of profanity in YA books, so I'm confused how it works and if there are certain topics that you can't touch when writing YA.
There is no rating in YA books. You can do/say whatever you want. There are some venues that don't sell YA novels with Content (as we call it, i.e. swears/sex), like Scholastic Book Fairs, but not like B&N, Amazon.
Kristin Owens ⚓️ @kristin_owens_@kate_mckean @BookEndsJessica Crap
If you know it's not there yet, don't query. It's too tough a market out there to hope that an agent will take a chance on something that needs work.
Simone Kern @simone_kern_YA@kate_mckean @Blind_Nycteris You start querying, get several PRs, & while you’re waiting to hear back, realize the rest of the book doesn’t deliver on the promise of the opening act. You can make it better, but you need time. Then you get a full MS request. Send what you’ve got? Or request time for revision?
That's tough. You can be upfront with the full-requesting agent and see what they say. They may disagree with you! Just don't revise and send a new version weeks later saying NO NO NO READ THIS ONEEEEE
Shawn McKee @shawnrmckee@kate_mckean Why is it that submission guidelines often ask for a specific number of pages, when a “page” is a subjective measurement depending on font choice and size?
Use 12pt font, one inch margins, standard font (like TNR) and don't try to cheat the system. :) Use your best judgement. If an agent asks for 30 pages and your ch. 2 ends on page 32, send 32 pp. You won't get booted out of the system.
Jenna Aker @jenbarie@kate_mckean How does a writer who wants to publish in multiple genres find an agent?
It's tough. You have to start with one book. If you get an offer, talk to that agent about the other genres you want to do. See if you're a match. Avoid having multiple agents. Of course, you have to pub in 1 genre first, before you can pub in another. :)
Jess Hernandez @FinkHernandez@kate_mckean Anything in particular you'd like to see more of, particularly in women's fiction?
feminist literary fiction! historical set in the 20C that's not war related! Books about women getting shit done!
Monadiki @MonadikiFierce@kate_mckean Ah this makes so much sense. Thank you for taking the time to answer. And I suppose each stands on it's own unless there is one book that looks great for a movie or such?
It's just really really rare for a movie to sell before the book, unless you are already mega famous.
Crystal R Gehrt @Crystal_R_Gehrt@kate_mckean @Jess_Wade If I plan to write a trilogy, is it okay to end the first book with the reader not knowing the antagonist's motivation? If so, do you let the agent know when you pitch? Write second book or wait to be picked up first?
Nope, that's not a great idea. You can't sell book 2 until you sell book 1. If book 1 doesn't do well, you might not get to write/sell book 2. Book 1 has to stand on it's own two legs.
Emily F. Popek @EmilyPopek@kate_mckean Any tips on building a platform as a fiction writer?
Write wherever you can. Better is tangentially related to your book's themes. (Mental health? Feminism? Historical medical quackery? Whatever you got). But just keep writing.
Mathina Calliope @MathinaCalliope@kate_mckean What's the best way to overcome the problem of having a book that's similar in concept (though different in execution) to a category killer (like WILD. okay, not like WILD, WILD)?
Lead with the execution, not the concept.
Sadclown Megan @ThunderTheft@kate_mckean @FinkHernandez I love both those questions! To combine the two, what tropes are over used in children's books?
About a hundred million of them. :) And varies by picbook, MG, YA. But I've seen a lot of overcoming bullying stories and I think we're good there for a while.
Monadiki @MonadikiFierce@kate_mckean Do agents only pitch to the big publishers or do they have visions that are bigger, like movies, TV, merchandise etc?
Books and movies are two different pitches. We do both. Merchandise is harder because that is most often tied up with movie rights. Book agents usually pitch book first, then movie. Movies don't really want an untested book.
Lynn(e) Schmidt @LynneSchmidt@kate_mckean How does one go about querying a poetry manuscript? #AskAgent
Oooof. There are very few agents who rep poetry. Find them first. But you can also go straight to small pubs who do poetry without an agent. I don't do poetry so I'm not the best resource.
Troy Wilderson @MizGolightly@kate_mckean Which is worse: a ten-year-old comp with a comp to another writer or no comps at all? Thanks!
If we still recall that 10yo book, then that's fine. But it's not a strike against a query to have no comps, IMHO.
Leigh A. Hartman @barefoot4life85@kate_mckean @BookEndsJessica What do you look for in a writer who's querying their debut novel/novella? Someone who has no awards or accolades to their name?
A good book. Awards are well and good, but they don't turn the tide (unless you have, like, a Nobel or something). (I don't rep novellas, FYI.)