So the second round of the Like a Virgin contest has been announced, and yours truly isn’t in it.

I’m not disheartened, though.  Limited number of slots, not everyone can make it and all.  I only got a couple of comments on my entry, but they were very good.  Both suggested ways that I could tighten up the query, including a point that I’d been too close to the story to notice.  The genesis of this novel was a particular premise (paranormal romance 20 years later, bitter and frankly inevitable divorce), but that bit ended up being more of a B-plot.  It’s not a bad thing to pitch on its own and I felt like it was going to be a huge selling point of the novel.  From the feedback I got, I’ve realized that while it is a selling point, it’s not a necessary selling point.  So out it goes.  Kill your darlings.

I also got some praise that I would go so far as to call “glowing.”  The word “swoon” may have been used.  I’ve long felt pretty confident with my voice, especially when explicitly in character, so getting some affirmation of that set me to some swooning of my own.

All in all, it’s not really a setback, more of an opportunity that didn’t quite pan out.  My timeline for submission will proceed unaltered:

  • Wait for beta feedback to arrive
  • Gather agent lists like whoa
  • Revisions and Query Sharking
  • Begin submissions!

The goal is to be submitting by sometime in June.  I think that’s doable, especially given that the feedback from both the contest and the readers so far is that it just needs some tweaking and tightening before it’s good to go.

Onwards and upwards!

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