So over at WriteOnCon the lovely literary Lara Perkins from Andrea Brown Literary, posted about how to know if your MS is ready to query.  Now this is something I’ve read a lot about, sometimes I hear only “when it’s finished” and sometimes people give more detail that still isn’t very helpful, but Ms. Perkins provided a wonderful checklist:

Have I asked myself the following big-picture questions about my manuscript—and revised if the answer is no?

  • Does my story have a clear beginning, middle, and end?
  • Do my characters have interesting and relatable goals in which a reader can invest?
  • Are the stakes high?
  • Are my characters unique and differentiated from one another—in the way they speak, in the way they act, in the choices they make, in their goals/hopes/dreams?
  • Do my characters change throughout the story? Do they have character arcs, with definite beginnings, middles, and endings?
  • Are the obstacles that keep my characters from achieving their goals believable and interesting?
  • Are all the scenes and characters necessary to the story?
  • Is the action moving at a page-turning pace?
  • Do my chapter endings and beginnings fit together in a way that propels the reader into the next part of the story?
  • Am I the only person who can tell this story and is that reflected in the voice?
  • Is the voice consistent and well-matched for this story?
  • Is my story different from what’s out there? (Hopefully, this is the easiest question to answer because you’ve been reading constantly in your genre and age group…right?)

This is amazing and as I begin to prepare myself to query for BLOOD OF ISIS, I will definitely be asking myself these questions.  This is only step 6 in her post…but you should read the full post.

Whimsically Yours,

PnC

Written by Patrice

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