Just when I was ready to pack it in, with no agents interested in the query letter, I get a rejection letter that has me turning in confused circles.
It was a no, of course, because they're all no in the end. This time the agent provided a few words of critique, so I couldn't complain, could I? We all want a little guidance, a hint about where the manuscript can be tweaked in the hopes that someone else might like it.
Again, it was the slow start that did me in. The use of too much description that paints a picture of place but slows the narrative. And here I thought I had conquered that particular problem. How wrong I was.
Might as well go back and edit the first couple of chapters, to erase the slow parts and make a concerted effort to avoid the addition of things that I think are necessary to tell the story, but actually aren't.
There was one other notation, however, and that's created a whole different problem. How can I re-draw the protagonist so that she's realistically layered? How to show, rather than tell, that she's young, giddy and very naive so her choices aren't founded on solid logic? Or is that even really a factor? It could be that this one agent was expecting one sort of character and found that mine didn't match up.
Pack it in, or keep going? Well, there's this other manuscript that I've started on and I might as well finish it. And then send out queries. The protagonist might be someone that a New York agent could better relate to.