Monday, October 11, 2010

More From Mary Kole Webinar

"Writers of books about the real world have to dig deep and tell the truth." Ursula Nordstrom

Isn't that a fantastic quote?? I'd never heard it before til Mary's webinar. Honestly, I didn't know who Ursula was, but she was responsible for introducing some very famous stories to the kidlit world.

I'll break the recap up into a few different posts since there was so much. For starters, Mary gave some tips for being successful in your writing:

Most important is
         Researching the market
         Polishing the writing
         Getting/giving critiques
         Revision skills
         Patience

Her tips for queries:
         Always follow agency guidelines and personalize
         Isolate the hook
        What is the selling point?
        Who will read it? Similar successful books?
         Brief, professional approach
        Make agent care about the MC and story

Agent will care about your query if you do these things:
        Show who the MC is
        What is the action that launches the story?
        What or Who does the MC want most?
        What or Who is the obstacle?
        What is at stake if MC doesn't get it?

Mary said YA sales are up %30 and kids are online and want to get to know authors. Great market potential for books in a series... especially for MG authors.

Her suggested length for the different kidlit areas:
      PB---- 500 words
      MG----35-60k words
      YA----45-90k words

She said to stay away from your MC being 14 or 15 because kids like to read up and there's a gap with protags in the 14-15 age range.

She said you should always submit work/queries simultaneously.
Don't write in the style you think kids should be reading, but in how they want to read.        

She suggested these books for kidlit writers:
       Writing Great Books for YA  (Brooks)
       Spilling Ink  (Mazer & Potter)
       Writing the Breakout Novel  (Maass)
       Story   (McKee)
       On Writing (King)

Man, I so need to read those. Gotta find the time to do it all! I'll have more on Mary's webinar later, breaking it down into MG and YA.      


I had a fab costume party on Saturday. Check out my White Queen costume below.....



Ha ha! Good for a laugh, right?? Lots of great "queen" costumes: zombie queen, 4 Cleopatras, Queen Mary, 2 Dairy Queen employees, Snow White Queen, Queen of controversy: Lady Gaga, 2 beauty queens..... lol! Good times!

Happy Monday! How was your weekend??

6 comments:

Quinn said...

Thanks for posting this. I've actually been really interested in querying Mary Kole since I read about her on Literary Rambles. It's great to see her advice on these topics.

Love the White Queen costume!

LTM said...

mary's great---thanks for passing her tips along, queenie~ :D

JEFritz said...

First of all, thanks for the tips. Second, your costume is hereby deemed "Fantabulous." I'd love to see a full length shot of the dress.

Maria McKenzie said...

PK, thanks for all the great tips from Mary Kole!
And love the costume:).

Lola Sharp said...

Love the costume! (can you share pictures of the others? I love that 2 people thought of DQ costumes. ;)

And that is one of my favorite quotes. :)

Kathryn said...

Holy cow! Look how fab you look as a queen! Rock it! Great post, too!