I don’t know what this means, but it may be good. After sending to literally hundreds of literary agents, there seems to be one that may be somewhat interested in my book. It’s true that I’ve had agents ask for more of the manuscript and then reject it (it’s all part of the game). However, this was the first time I have ever been asked to send the entire novel to an agency and get such intense feedback. The agent and her assistant read ‘Noon’ to its entirety and then emailed me some comments. Some of the feed back was as follows:
– “I think there is something here.”
– “The beginning is a little slow.”
– “The main problem I have with it is that the book is first person.”
– “They are all in the hospital for varying reasons but I like the fact that this is the main setting.”
– “This is a twist and is focusing on the patients instead.”
– “There are too many secondary characters to keep track of.”
– “Do I think something is here? Yes.”
These are comments from Jan Kurdys and her assistant at Black Hawk Literary Agency. I can’t believe the wonderful feedback I got from them – two and a half pages of input. They are interested in working with me, only if I make some changes. This is where it gets tricky.
I am motivated and determined when it comes to writing – especially this story. I am more than willing to work with the slowness of the beginning of the novel as well as the unneeded secondary characters. Along with this, I will get rid of the access wordiness and parts of the novel that would make the story simpler. I will focus primarily on the friendship of the girls and their personal struggles.
The point of view change is what stops me in my tracks.
I am in love with the idea of each character telling their own story. I love how they each have a chance to express their emotions and this is relatable to the audience and reader. I do understand that it can seem difficult when reading from chapter to chapter, the ‘I’ changing each time. However, I love the POV and truly do not want to have to change it. I think by changing the POV, the story changes as well.
Of course, I turned to Jodi Picoult for answers. She is known for the first person POV. So, I asked her this via twitter:
– @jodipicoult: when an agent first found you interesting, did you have to edit quite a bit of the novel or did you stand your ground with certain things?
– @jenni_aline: Stood my ground. Which is why I had 100+ agent rejections before finding my wonderful agent.
This is a tough decision. I feel like there may be something there with this agency. I could feel their curiosity when reading their emails and took everything they said to heart. However, I love my first person voice.
Therefore, I will stick with it – for now. I will go ahead editing the other aspects of the book – slowness of the first chapters, extra characters, wordiness, unneeded scenes. After that, I will send the book back and see what they think.
This has all made me realize how real my passion is for writing. I will put my everything into making my dream a reality – even if it means waking up before work and writing/editing until late at night. I will do this and I will make this happen.
I guess this will be a summer to learn from. Welcome to the industry.