If only to make sure October has more posts than any other month, here's another! HOT DAMN!
Found out about http://www.agentquery.com/ which is basically 'Duotrope for agents' so spent today sending off queries for my novel, THIS VILLAGE NEVER DREAMS. I've got so used to putting that in capitals in query letters that I think I'm incapable of writing it in any other way that doesn't denote SHOUTING.
I'm working on a collab story with a friend of mine, which is extremely exciting. It features a radioactive zombie, something we both felt was sorely lacking from horror fiction at the moment. It also has subtle 'Second Coming' and 'Anti-Nukes' themes, but not in the way you might think. How mysterious!
Once we've polished this one, if we have time we're going to try collaborating on a sci-fi novella (to sub somewhere). Science-Fiction isn't really my forté, although I am by no means adverse to it. I just thought my friend's much better at it than me, so it should prove an interesting experience.
In fact, THIS VILLAGE NEVER DREAMS (see? I keep shouting it) has some strong science-fiction elements...but only in that some of the characters are scientists, who conduct experiments. That's it, really. Not a massive sub-plot or anything, just an extra dollop to spice things up. But even so, that seems to fudge things up, as does the rather unexpected vein of sardonic humour that runs throughout the novel. Some people evidently have a problem with cross-genre work, but more fool them!
Argh now that's ended up sounding like I'm moaning about someone. I'm not. I either have crashed and burned with queries or been asked to send my manuscript in. More and more I keep finding out there really is no one true way to go about things.
And on a final note, someone recently read my query (not an agent or publisher, though) and said I needed to make a point of mentioning the themes. So I did, in one or two subsequent queries (which I'm still awaiting replies for) only to then find out "DON'T MAKE A POINT OF MENTIONING THEMES!". Why? Because it breaks one of the golden rules of writing: SHOW, DON'T TELL.
And on we go...