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  1. #11
    Senior Member Keith .'s Avatar
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    Food? Mmmmmm, you're definitely one of us, now!
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  2. #12
    Senior Member L C's Avatar
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    Is it better to take a course that is university accredited? Is it something that is worth mentioning in a query letter?
    I'm just responding to this, not to the merits of critique, vomiting 50,000 words on a page or whatever.

    I cannot fathom why any publisher or agent would care that you took a course in writing, whether it's online, offline or on planet Zog. The submission is a "proof is in the pudding" thing -either you can write well or you can't. So what I'm saying is, I'd leave it out of the query.

  3. #13
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    If you had completed a reputable creative writing course, mentioning that would be a shortcut to bolstering an agent's/publisher's confidence that you had a foundation for writing. They don't really assume those sending queries have the foundation; they assume otherwise because of all of the submissions they get from folks who don't have a clue but who may have had the query polished by committee on a website like this one.

    I've been wondering, though, if the e-book revolution has cut down in the query letters from the masses that agents and publishers now receive.

  4. #14
    simba major
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    If Donald Maass ever comes to Toronto, I'll be there, but I won't put in my query.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by L C View Post
    I'm just responding to this, not to the merits of critique, vomiting 50,000 words on a page or whatever.

    I cannot fathom why any publisher or agent would care that you took a course in writing, whether it's online, offline or on planet Zog. The submission is a "proof is in the pudding" thing -either you can write well or you can't. So what I'm saying is, I'd leave it out of the query.
    I think the influx of queries to agents is as large or larger than it's ever been. Easy access via the Internet and email has increased the number of queries most agents receive. Some agents say they receive over 200 queries a day. The numbers boggle the mind.

    Jeanne

  6. #16
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    I also disagree with with Pendragin's assertion that scribbling 50,000 words in a month is likely to be a useful exercise.
    Really Cur? I think you're fully living up to your screen name with this one. Where did I make that assertion? 50,000 words is a deadline; a concrete goal most people file in their, lazy-day, someday-I-will-write-except-that-day-never comes, file. Susan said:
    My main objective is to study the craft of writing, with deadlines to force me to write more.
    Isn't that what Nanowrimo is? How compelling are her works likely to be when she's first learning the craft? Wouldn't 50,000 words also be a lot of practice? What you've done , in my opinion, was snobbish and mean spirited.
    Last edited by Author Pendragin; 03-11-2012 at 10:08 PM.

  7. #17
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    Pendragin, I'm not going to get into a contest with you to see which of us can pee the farthest.

    You're right, you offered the 50,000-word idea as a goal. If it works for you, that's a good thing. I don't think writing 50,000 words in a month is of serious benefit for most beginning writers unless they don't have any other responsibilities such as work or family. My objection to that kind of short-term goal is the writer ends up focusing on quantity.

    Is practice a good thing? Of course. Who would think that's not a good thing? But there's more than one way to practice. I'm not advocating Susan or anyone else agonize over each word, each phrase, each sentence. I do advocate that a new writer spend time getting words on the computer screen, while also working on the craft. I'd like to think most people here agree writing is a learned craft. For most of us, it takes at least two things. Practice, putting words on the screen. Learning the craft by reading like crazy and editing words on the screen. I also believe competent critique is vary useful for new writers. Even published writers. When you read acknowledgments by published writers, many of them name the people who provided critique.

    I note you were the one who proposed Susan "missed the point." I guess that wasn't mean-spirited.

    Susan's reply to me didn't seem to reflect that I had been "snobbish and mean spirited." Or, do you mean I offended you? Wasn't my intent. I merely disagreed with you.

    Cur

  8. #18
    Junior Member gertegan's Avatar
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    From a writing class I took in college, there is something to be said for forcing a wordcount. If you tell yourself you want to write x amount of words in a month or what have you, you're forcing yourself to turn off your inner editor so the geek in you can be free to write whatever drivel comes to mind. It's not going to be a finished product, but it's not a bad exercise either just to teach you that there is a time for editing and a time for writing. I know one of the biggest problems I've always had is reigning in my inner editor so I could just write.

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