Setting goals for myself only works if I do the whole evaluate-recalibrate thing...so it's time for some accountability!
Here are the goals I stated for the end of February:
By the end of February I will:
1) Have a query letter ready to go out to agents.
2) Send that query letter to at least five agents I have researched.*
3) Have finished the narrative summary revision pass of MMORPG.
4) Finish submitting 'Left Overs' (flash fiction piece).
Did I meet them?
Narrative summary revision pass of MMORPG?
Submission of my flash fiction piece?
Check. In fact, it's been submitted twice, rejected, revised, retitled, and resubmitted.
Have a query letter ready to go out to agents?
Check. In fact, I prepared it, sent it, and then completely revised it. I have this strange thing wrong with my brain where no matter how much I edit something and recheck it, read it aloud, send it to friends/colleagues to evaluate, once I send it out to the actual intended target, suddenly I see a million flaws in it. So, it has been revised and is now new-and-improved for future submissions.
Send that query letter to five researched agents?
Um...Okay, so see, what had happened was? This turned out to be a little more complex than I had thought. Some agents want more than just an initial query letter, some want a synopsis or other materials, which I knew. But in my initial research pass, I didn't see many who wanted anything other than a one-page query; so I figured they ask for those other materials if they're interested in your query, and I'd write it as I was waiting to hear back. But, of course, the next set of agents that I identified as a good fit for Hazel-Green want more materials with the initial query, so I need to write that synopsis before I can move forward.
Plus, I just got some feedback from one of my beta-readers that makes me want to do some double-checking and possibly another revision pass; of course I need to do that before I send out any more query letters, because the last thing I want is to lose an interested agent because my materials aren't in top shape.
So, I'm revising this goal in light of these issues. By the end of March I will have a synopsis and a firm understanding of what needs to be done to Hazel-Green; I will also work on revising that and be done by the end of March, unless it turns out to be something more untenable than it seems at first glance.
Live and learn, right? One of the reasons I decided to write about my goals on the blog is so that I can share with other writers the bumps I hit along the road, and the things I learn, so hopefully this will help others become a little savvier about preparing for the submission process!