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Having a page for my writing on blog or website pre-agent search
stephmcgee
Posted: Monday, May 23, 2011 3:27 AM
Joined: 3/13/2011
Posts: 245


Currently on my blog I have a page devoted to my writing.  At the moment it is nothing more than the titles and genres, divided between poetry and fiction, and a log line for two of the projects.  There is space for blurbs, but I'm hesitant to do so.  (I would hate to mislead someone who happened across my blog and lead them to believe that they could go buy any of the books listed on the page.)

I'm debating whether I should bite the bullet and write blurbs for the ones that are written and take the in-development (as opposed to in first draft or revision) projects off or scrap the page entirely.

Thoughts?

Michael L Martin Jr
Posted: Wednesday, May 25, 2011 1:06 AM
Joined: 4/3/2011
Posts: 23


I checked out your "my writing" section on your blog. As purely informational, what you have is fine. Updating your readers on your progress is a cool and considerate thing to do. Some of your readers might want to know more about your work, and you've given them an easy way to find more information. The blurbs might make it more interesting because it could potentially intrigue or spark interest within the reader.

Having said that though, that section seems more suited for works that have an actual release date. Updating readers on any writing progress doesn't really mean anything unless the readers can purchase the works right now or someday soon. Your most hardcore readers will appreciate this information. Other readers will shrug it off and forget about it five minutes later.

It doesn't hurt you or your blog though. It just may not be the most important thing. It's totally up to you though. I hope I was able to help.
MarieDees
Posted: Saturday, May 28, 2011 12:22 PM
Joined: 3/11/2011
Posts: 157


I'm seeing more agents and acquisitions editors warn against putting too much information out about unpublished work on blogs. I currently don't list works on my "Books" page unless they are available for purchase or have at least been accepted for publication. (I don't have a release day yet for "Angel in the Middle" but it will probably be this summer.) Projects I'm working on may casually be mentioned in posts, but I won't list them. There are reasons.

If it looks like I'm taking too long to complete projects, it can turn off an agent or editor who may not know why certain projects are taking longer or were put on hold.

Too many unsold projects can turn off an agent or editor. They may wonder why of all those works, nothing has been placed somewhere and no one else has shown interest in them.

Too few projects can turn off an agent or editor. They may wonder if an author is too caught up in "the project" or has the breadth to tackle other work.

Too many other agents or publishers having seen and rejected the work can easily turn off an agent or publisher. They all want to believe they're the first, even if they know they aren't. And there's no reason for an author to tell them they aren't the first.

If you're searching for an agent, you probably don't want to include anything about your writing on your website that you wouldn't tell them in a query letter.

stephmcgee
Posted: Thursday, June 2, 2011 4:17 PM
Joined: 3/13/2011
Posts: 245


Thanks for the input, guys. I had the opportunity to ask an agent about this, too, and she said it's a good idea.

The agent is Mandy Hubbard, and this is what she said:

"I know multiple agents who scout writers via their blogs/websites. Absolutely have a short pitch/email address!"

So, I think that for now I'm going to go with a pared down version of the writing page I had. I've taken the poetry off of it and have added a blurb for the revision WiP. I also removed the in-development book that I had on there because that project will likely never be written.

I think there are valid arguments for both sides of the equation and I really do appreciate your input and feedback.
MarieDees
Posted: Thursday, June 2, 2011 7:02 PM
Joined: 3/11/2011
Posts: 157


Yes, every acquisitions editor or slush reader for agents or publishers says they always check a writer's blog before moving forward in the query process. However, keep in mind that the scouting process does involve deciding who to reject. Anything you have on your blog could make them decide to pass and go on to something else.

Also, keep in mind, acquisitions folks will usually Google your name, the title of your manuscript and even the first line or samples from the story just to see what pops up. It's amazing how often these days they find that the author hasn't mentioned a small detail like the fact they've already self-published the story. Or plopped the whole thing on a blog, website or Facebook account. All of this is taken into account before they move forward with a submission.
Dan Blank
Posted: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 10:35 PM
Joined: 3/25/2011
Posts: 4


Hi! I think this is an opportunity to get people excited about what you do, as well as describe the specific pieces you are bringing to market. I'd love to see MORE here - I should walk away from this page with a clear vision of the story, the universe, and why I NEED to read this story!

I'm just thinking of how folks pitch movie ideas, with storyboards, artwork, and not just describing it, but SELLING us on it. Not selling as in spammy, but selling as in engaging.

Just my two cents.

Thanks.
-Dan
 

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