Monday, September 21, 2009

Monday Open WIP thread - "What's that thing with all the letters on it for, again?" Edition

Welcome to the Monday WIP post. I'm Doug, and I'll be rambling at you today.

Actually, I'm hoping to anything but ramble around the house today. After my traditional "school-is-out-and-I'm-home-with-the-kids,-maybe-I'll-get-some-writing-done,-oh-who-am-I-kidding?"hiatus, I am facing my first full day back at the computer. And while it feels good, it's also a bit daunting.

See, I had to stop working on my latest effort (Hawthorn Queen) almost exactly mid-book. Oh, I've hacked and fiddled with it here and there, but for the most part it has been lying fallow for the last three months. In addition, I had paused at the point where, while I know where I need to go, I'm not exactly sure about how I am going to get there. This is not a new sensation for me, or for most writers, I know --- but think about being there, then stepping away for three months, only to come back and look at the same forest standing before you. It would have been nice if someone had cleared away some of the scrub while I was away, or even marked out a deer path or two, but no such luck. I'm on my own.

So my plan for today is to dust off my (not as detailed as I'd like) outline, dig through my notes, and stare off into space for a bit, with the goal of refreshing my head as to the rest of the story line. With luck, I should be getting words on the page again this afternoon and for the rest of the week.

I know there will be other stuff in there as well (there's a faucet that needs fixing, for example), but I'm trying to focus on the newly reopened door for my writing at the moment. That faucet, after all, isn't going anywhere.

How about you? What are you up to today?


Jon said...

When submitting pages in your query, are they supposed to be single spaced or double spaced? I ask, because I'm about to query and I'm all a-twitter and single space or double space changes how much I send.

Douglas Hulick said...


First, go you! I'm excited to hear you are at this stage of the process. :)

I don't have as much experience with queries as some of the other Wyrdsmiths, but since I've done it recently, I'll give it a stab.

When you say "pages", are you talking about the manuscript or the synopsis?

If you mean the manuscript/sample pages, format it exactly as you would as if you were sending the whole book (double spaced, name and title and page number in the header, Chapter number/title half way down the page, etc.).

If you are asking regarding the synopsis, I would say check the individual agent's/publisher's guidelines. Most often, if the synopsis is more than a single page, you go with double-spacing, but that can vary. If you are unsure, it is better to ask before sending: it is more professional to ask and get it right than guess and get it wrong.

Hope this helps.

Jon said...

Thanks, that does help. It's the pasting into the e-mails that throws me. It just looks so sloppy, no matter what I do.

Anyway, thanks again. I was referring to MAnuscript pages, but the synopsis was something I hadn't considered.

Douglas Hulick said...


My answers were assuming you were either sending physical copy or including the pages as an attachment -- I hadn't even considered pasting it into an e-mail. E-mail can be a different animal, I would think, unless you are sending it is fixed format you know their e-mail client will recognize. I would default to readability in that instance or, again, ask.

Jon said...

Ah, of course. Thanks again.