The Last of my Query Letters

I sent the last of my query letters for Defender today. A little less than a year after I first finished the thing.

Total queries sent: 89. Total bites: 1

Man, I don’t know how you don’t curl up into a ball weeping in this business. Between Black Hole Son, Merm-8, and this, I’ve sent hundreds of query letters and had very minimal response. Not even people who were intrigued with the idea and wanted to see the writing style. Just whoop, reject, not even the 250 words were enough to put the foot in the door. I guess it’s not my third novel. My third novel, I get permission to cry. I wish I know where I’m coming in on the slushkiller percentile. All I ever get is “this is not right for me” or “my client list is full”.

writer tears whiskey
Someone’s got to fill these casks

These days I feel like I’m not writing what I’m meant to be. I get my favorite ideas for fantasy and science fiction. I got a cute little story that’s like a fairy tale romance but with a naga girl. But that’s all it is–a cute cozy story. These days, fantasy is full of epic landscapes and 500,000 word volumes. Or if you’re YA, ten book series with female warriors who know how to cartwheel through a hoop of fire but not how to talk to a boy. I’m not sure if I should try a non-spec fic or something else.

I should maybe be working on short stories. Practicing voice and style to match the current heavy hitters. I just finished “Press Start to Play” and these guys are light years ahead of me. I’m staying medieval and they’re flying hoverskids into tomorrow. Maybe I need to read more contemporary stuff to write in a contemporary way. My style’s more rooted in Stephen King and the classics that people tell me to read. It’d be like a baseball player modeling their swing after Babe Ruth. It was great in the day, but cannot contend with how the game has evolved.

NerdCon: Stories is coming up and I feel like I’m going as a poser. My heroes will be there and I don’t want to meet my heroes. I’m too afraid that they won’t measure up to my ideal. I’m too afraid any exchanges I have with them will be awkward. I’m not even really a fan — at least I don’t consider myself one. I love their works, but I don’t worship or fawn over them. My goal is to be like them. I’m afraid it’s going to be like Convergence all over again.

I haven’t looked at how “Dwarves Can’t Climb Trees” is doing either. I’m too afraid. Afraid that there are 0 hits, 0 downloads, 0 ratings, 0 feedback. I haven’t gotten one response about it since it went up. Even self-publishing is betraying me. How much longer am I going to have to be shouting into the dark?

Eric Juneau is a software engineer and novelist on his lunch breaks. In 2016, his first novel, Merm-8, was published by eTreasures. He lives in, was born in, and refuses to leave, Minnesota. You can find him talking about movies, video games, and Disney princesses at http://www.ericjuneaubooks.com where he details his journey to become a capital A Author.

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