Sunday, October 14, 2007

Here's Tomcat and I (Isoko's "Aunt Tomoko" and "Uncle Gennosuke") at the SCBWI Conference Friday night. I made these kimono and thought there was a chance - just a chance - that we could win the costume contest...






















until we saw this:


























This exceptional White Rabbit won, paws down. Isn't it fabulous? The guy made this himself!

The manuscript page you helped me with came in second by one vote. It would have tied for first place if I had voted for myself. Sigh. I started to do that, but then thought, no ... that would be wrong. I know, I'm such a dork. Everyone votes for themselves, right? D'oh!

The editor who reviewed the first ten pages of my MS was a disappointment, to say the least. For example, where the MS said "Just moments ago," she wrote, "Literally?" in the margin. Where I had "Jiro swaggered to the door," she wrote, "Why is he staggering?"

I'll show you the entire paragraph on this one. I wrote:

A truck rumbled by on the street below. She [Isoko] glanced at the earthquake doll her father gave her years ago. Its round wooden head wobbled in time with the vibrations she felt in the floor through her tabi-clad feet. The doll was all she had to remember him by. Tenderly, she turned the doll's head to face the same direction as before.

She wrote: "What happened to her father?" and "I wanted to know more about the earthquake doll - where did she get it? Why is it so important to her?"

When the editor gave her speech at the conference, I learned that she acquires titles for the mass market (this was not evident when I Googled her.) Her acquisitions are sold in bulk to places like Target, Wal-Mart, and Costco. She explained that Costco, for example, buys children's books four times a year by "footprint," meaning that they tell her, "We need a book that is 12" by 16" [or whatever] for the display table next season."

This explains a lot, doesn't it? Oh well, at least I won a T-shirt. :)

The good thing is that I met an agent to die for. I'm going to send a formal query to her after a final polish of my MS. The cost of the conference was worth this contact alone.

Now I'm going to try to catch up on everyone's blogs.
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IF YOU WANT TO VOTE FOR MY BLOG, OR HAVE HAD TROUBLE VOTING FOR IT, someone told me to try this link, then type in Chapterhouse in the search window. (I guess I should go vote for myself now, too...)