Thursday, May 07, 2009

Is no news good news? Do I really have to place my faith in that cliche? It's been four weeks since I sent my manuscript to the most enthusiastic literary agent I've queried to date, Michelle Andelman. Most agents usually require 4 to 6 weeks to read a complete manuscript, so once 6 weeks are up and she hasn't replied.... *Sigh*

Please let her be interested in representing me. That is all I ever want. I can hear desperation in my voice. Can you?

I've gotten some feedback (mainly from Ger and the rest) that Bedful of Moonlight is nicer than When the Lilies Turn Orange. That is both good and bad news. Bad new because, obviously, not only is Lilies not the phenomenal debut I'd hoped it would be, my readers are unable to feel the same way about as I do. But the good news is that if my second novel is better than my first, that means I've improved in one way or another ... right?

One comment I've gotten was that Lilies has too much backstory that made the beginning rather draggy. Okay, fair point. I guess I can see where that came from. Seeing as how that was my first novel that took place in the slightly-Utopic-almost-dystopic estate of Wroughton, I felt the need to firmly establish the setting so as to set the tone and mood of the story.

If Michelle Andelman decides to represent me and wants me to get rid of all that backstory, I'll hack it off, no question. (Again with the desperation. You hear it? It's almost embarrassing. I'm like grovelling.

The reason why I prefer Lilies is because of the setting, and the romance. For Lilies, I always draw up the image of a grand wrought-iron gate flanked by high hedges, with vines curling all over it. And inside the Garden, there'd be a stone fountain, and a maze that eventually leads to the nursery and gift shop, and Raven's (the story's protagonist) favourite hideout: the statue of Venus, where she brings Connell on his birthday...

And the garden would be wild and buzzing, full of life and secrets, and the sweet, heady perfumes of flowers are witnesses to the dark romance between Raven and Connell.

It's just really dramatic for me. Which is how I like it.

As for Bedful of Moonlight, I imagine a quiet cemetary, full of lush greenery everywhere, serene and restful. A quiet lane runs around the cemetary and into the heart of the estate. The rain is over, raindrops slide off the leaves, and the world is cleansed, left cool and gasping, reborn. Just like how moving to Wroughton represents a new life for Kristen.

(I trawled through a hell lot of pictures to find that cemetary one. But it still isn't quite like what I picture. The lane isn't there, for one thing. And for another, I didn't picture so many tombs so closely packed against one another. The cemetary I have in mind is spacious, open, full of light and wind.)

Thoughts, anyone? Feel free to comment.

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