Tuesday, January 3, 2017

WOTP Interview: Emily Smith, Young Adult Author

The next category of my Wielders of the Pen are Querying Writers.

Querying writers have taken the next step after writing and editing their book. A quick explanation of querying...

Querying is when a writer composes a query letter (typically a 250-300 word email introducing themselves and their book--which is a challenge in itself!) and sends it to agents. After receiving this letter, agents can either respond with a rejection or a request or, after receiving a request, an offer of representation! All the writers in this category are currently in the querying trenches, waiting to hear back from agents. 

Let's check out our first querying writer... Emily Smith!

To start on a personal note, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Sure! Hi I’m Emily (Actually, it is my pen name) I’m an 18 year old student from Georgia, a small yet beautiful country. I study in English philology, which I absolutely love! I also love reading, writing, books, and horror genre.

What novel are you currently querying? What is it about in a few sentences?

Ah, that actually is the hardest question to me, cause I don’t want to give away spoilers! Well okay, at least I’ll try. The novel is a YA Dystopian Thriller. It is about two boys, Peter and Josh. Peter is a normal boy, yet he has a peculiar talent and Josh is a serial killer who is seeking revenge for his childhood.

Who is your favorite character from this book?

Peter! Peter and his father! I adore them in every way!

Have you written/queried other books before?

 I have written other books! I’ve written three novels. They were about kids who were the descendants of ancient blood wars and were trained as a super soldiers. Yet I never queried them because I knew I was too young for that, so for three to four years I did nothing but revise.

Location of Georgia. Map found here.
What is the hardest part about querying?

To stay motivated and keep querying. I bet most of the writers will say rejections, but I understand that rejection is a part of business. Still, staying motivated is very hard. Sometimes I seriously consider quitting.

How did you pick the agents you wanted to query?

I often visit Writer’s Digest and Twitter with #MSWL hash tag to see if agents’ interest match to my novel. If it does, then I’ll query. I also read interviews, and if they think like I do, but their MSWL don’t matches with mine, I still query.

How do you cope while waiting to hear back from agents?

That’s hard for sure, but usually I still keep revising and doing my daily chores. That way I don’t think about agents at all.

Do you have any tips for writers yet to query or those who are writing query letters?

Yes, do your homework and follow agent’s advice carefully. You might think that you can write a perfect query letter on your own, but trust me, you can’t!

Finally, how will you celebrate when you eventually get your agent?

I don’t know! I’ll tell you when I get an agent. I might jump out of my pants. I might say yes that’s good, but I still have to get published, so I don’t know.

Emily, thank you so much for chatting with me today. Emily is an awesome name by the way. Perfect choice for a pen name ;)

If you want to stay in touch with Emily and her writerly journey, you can find her at her website!

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