I’m In The Query Trenches !!

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It’s been a while since I last logged in and wrote a blog post. In the past, I have talked about writing my book and revising it, but last month I started my querying journey to try and find someone who will love my not-so-little dragon book as much as I do. I won’t lie, it hasn’t been easy and while I’ve tried my hardest to manage the stress, it caused me to enter into a big reading slump and I kind of disconnected from my blog for a little bit. Not to mention my revision process took up all my energy as I took on the advice and suggestions of my beta readers.

At the beginning of the month, on the 8th to be precise, I passed the one year anniversary since I got the idea for Beneath the Empty. A book I love with all my heart filled with dragons, magic, family, romance and darker themes about dealing with loss and overcoming prejudices. It’s changed quite a bit in places from that first draft, but the help I have received from my critique partners and beta readers has made it even better. Then it was time to query.

Once I had my query letter written, first few chapters polished and synopsis ready, a bundle of nerves hit me in the stomach. As I prepared myself to press send on the first letter, a hundred thoughts rushed my mind. What if I wasn’t ready? What if my writing isn’t good enough? What if no one likes my story? But if I didn’t take the leap, I would never know if it was good enough or if there is an agent out there who will love it as much as I do.

Since mid-May, I have sent out 20 queries altogether and have received 5 rejections, one of them being a no-reply. The best rejection was from an agent who said my book isn’t something they are currently looking for, but they hope I query them again if I find myself with another book to query. I’m taking that as meaning they liked my style of writing, but the dragon book isn’t right for them. Nearly all the rejections have been form rejections apart from that one, so it’s hard to know what’s gone wrong. Is it truly just not the right book for them? Did they think the query letter was bad, is the first chapter or the first 5-10 pages boring/not good enough? Unless I receive a personal rejection, I’ll never know.

Something I did after I started getting the first few rejections back was to send out my first chapter and query to another writer who helped me tweak it a little. She also assured me that she would want to read more just based on those things. Now that I’ve done that, I’ve recently sent out more queries in the hopes of *maybe* getting a full or partial manuscript request. It’s the most I can hope for.

It’s gotten a little bit easier to send out the queries now, although I still have that small knot in my stomach whenever I press send on an email. It’s hard to put yourself and your work out there. You have to detach yourself from it and realise that rejection of the book doesn’t reflect onto you as a writer. So far I think I am handling it. At least I haven’t cried, so maybe I’m stronger and tougher than I think.

I might write a more in-depth post soon about how I am dealing with being in the query trenches, mainly by working out a lot and starting to write a new book (which I am super excited about and already have 25k words written). As nerve-wracking as querying is, it’s also exciting! I’m quite an optimistic person, often daydreaming about what I would do if I got a request or offer of representation, so that’s what I’m hoping for. Until then, I’m going to keep sending queries out and work on my next book in case this one doesn’t pan out.

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Any other writers out there querying their book? Let me know in the comments below.

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Switching It Up

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I’ve been thinking about my blog a lot lately and how I’ve been terrible at creating posts. I think the reason for this is that I’m in a funk with it and I have so much more to talk about than just reviewing books, as much as I love doing that! For this reason, I think my blog needs a little shake up to make things interesting again.

I have an amazing amount of followers so far and I am so grateful to you all. I will still be posting reviews and hosting blog tours when I am participating, but I also wanted to post about my life in general. Daydreaming Roux should be about more than just books, it should be about my world and everything that goes on in it. This will mean featuring a gallery where I can post my artwork and writing posts about my own writing journey. Because those things are a big part of my life too.

Hopefully you’ll all enjoy the change, which might come along with a little update to how the blog looks when I have the time. I started a new job about a month ago now after giving freelance a try. It turns out I prefer knowing how much money I’m going to get each month but luckily I have an amazing content writing job for a marketing company. Since then I have been less stressed and now that I’m in a routine again I think it’s a good idea to start blogging more regularly. To tell you the truth, I’ve missed it a lot, especially the community of the book blogging world.

I will try to post a few times a week but if you’d like to know more about what I have to say and what I’m up to, why not give me a follow on Twitter or Instagram? You can find the links along the sidebar of my blog and it would be great to connect with more people on there too! Again, I’m so sorry for disappearing while my life was a little all over the place, but I am determined to make a comeback and hopefully reach 500 followers soon!

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It’s My Birthday!

This week has been amazing so far. Not only have we found a place to live, I also got to celebrate my birthday with my favourite people. At work we get a gift day for our birthday that doesn’t come out of our annual leave, which meant I was off on Friday. But before I left on the Thursday everyone came over to my desk with gifts and chocolate cake to celebrate. I hadn’t been expecting it at all and I may have felt my cheeks get a little warm from embarrassment.

Yesterday I went out for an early birthday meal with my boyfriend for an Italian and it was amazing, as you can see from the pictures below. It helped that I got a £25 gift card from work that could be used at Zizzi’s. The food never disappoints and we were left feeling very full (I will admit, I had a food induced nap, it was amazing).

My actual birthday was spent getting my hair sorted at the hairdressers (and my hairdresser kindly gave me an extra treatment for free) and then I headed home to open my presents from my family. My mum went out and bought a ton of kitchenware for our new home and it’s made me so excited for moving in. There’s still a lot more to buy but at least I’m off to a great start. I also got some books from my dad and sister that I am super excited to read! As well as this I received some beautiful flowers from my boyfriend that are making the room smell lovely, and a brand new coat in a style that I have been searching forever for (I’ve had my current for 6 years, it was time to move on).

Overall it has been a great day and I feel very lucky to have so many people that care and love me. Now it’s time to go and have some of the delicious chocolate cake that is waiting for me downstairs!

Wrapping Up The Week (11th Dec – 17th Dec)

It’s nearly one week until Christmas! How excited is everyone about that fact? I have finished all my Christmas shopping and everything is being delivered in the coming week (the postmen are going to hate me). I don’t know about you, but I always feel more relaxed once I have everything organised and all that’s left to do is to wrap the presents and stock up on the drink.

The past week has been much better than my previous ones. My boyfriend is on the mend and we will be able to travel to Ireland after Christmas, something we didn’t think would happen. He’s healing extremely quickly and it’s safe to say that we are over the moon. As well as this, I also started my new job and I couldn’t be happier. It’s makes all the difference when you love what you do and as I get to write for a living in a marketing role, it’s a dream. My new team is great and so friendly, they even got me a few gifts in their secret Santa (something I didn’t think would happen at all). You can see them in the image below (and yes, I did open the wine the other night).

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I especially love the mug, which I will be using everyday for my morning coffee. Not only did I have a great week at work, I finally finished reading a book (cheers in the background) and I will explain about it in the section below.

Books I read and reviewed…

Everless

This, by far, is my favourite read of the year. I was accepted on NetGalley to read Everless by Sara Holland (something I prayed would happen) and as soon as I picked this book up, I didn’t want to put it down. I was hooked from the beginning and it has become one of my favourite YA Fantasy books. It was easy to give this 5 stars and you can read all my thoughts here. 

I am currently reading…

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I put Angelfall on hold while I read Everless, but I am planning on finishing this hopefully (fingers crossed) before we’re halfway through the week. I am over halfway now and I’m really liking it. Angelfall is such an easy read, it’s lighthearted and fun, just what I need at the moment.

Posts from the week…

Unfortunately the only post I wrote this week was the review of Everless, but I will try to do a couple more this week. With the new job, I think I needed time to adjust because I was way more tired in the evenings than I realised I would be. I didn’t even have to energy to write (I’m very sad about this fact).

Other Fun Stuff…

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A few weeks ago Peaky Blinders returned to the BBC for its fourth season and I have been loving it. Season 3, for me, wasn’t as good, but this one just blew everything out of the water. The season finale will be shown on Wednesday, so I am looking forward to that. If anyone hasn’t watched this series then you have to check it out. It’s so addictive!

I haven’t really been doing much else. I’ve been spending some more time on Twitter and connecting with the community there, so if you haven’t given me a follow it would be great if you could (I follow back, too). My novel is coming along, just a little bit slower now that I’ve got my new job. As I will have more time over Christmas I am hoping to knuckle down and churn out at least 1,500 words a day (just 500 more than my normal target).

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I hope that you have all had a great week and that you are enjoying the lead up to Christmas!

Wrapping Up The Week (4th Dec – 10th Dec)

This week has felt like the longest one in a while. If you didn’t know, I took a week off from blogging due to my boyfriend being admitted to hospital for an operation on Tuesday and I’ve been helping him recover since (you can read more about it here). For that reason I haven’t really got a lot to show on this weeks wrap up.

My brain has been all over the place and the stress I’ve been feeling hasn’t helped at all. I even took a couple days off from writing because I literally couldn’t form a sentence in my head. I needed it though and I am feeling a lot better. So fingers crossed I can get back to blogging more from now on, even if it’s just 3 posts a week until things get back to normal.

Some good news though is that I start my new job tomorrow, which I am super excited about. Now that my boyfriend is able to move around on his own, I can safely go to work knowing he won’t hurt himself. Starting the new job will also offer me a distraction from all the anxiety I’ve been feeling lately (although I know I’ll still worry about him).

As I haven’t done a lot of reading there are no reviews to show, so I’ll go straight onto the next section…

I am currently reading…

For the first time in a while I am actually reading 3 books at once. This is due to the fact that I am still reading Glass Sword and Angelfall, but I also got accepted for a book on Netgalley that I couldn’t wait to read. And the book is…

Everless

I can’t put this book down, I am absolutely loving it and whenever I get a chance I am switching to the kindle app on my phone (until I buy a kindle at Christmas) and I am reading as much as I can. I’m over halfway now and should probably finish it tomorrow if I’m lucky. It is due to come out on January 2nd and is being published by HarperTeen. Also, look how gorgeous that cover is!

Other Fun Stuff…

I wouldn’t say that I’ve had a lot of fun stuff going on for me this week. It’s mainly been filled with trips to the hospital and doctors, giving medication to my boyfriend and generally running around for him like a headless chicken. Not that I’m complaining, it makes a change me looking after him, and I definitely feel that it’s brought us closer.

My writing is getting back on track and so far I have 42,000 words, something I am so proud of. I worked out that I’m about halfway through the story I want to tell and the next few chapters that I’ve planned have me excited. Fingers crossed I can have a first draft done before my birthday (which is in March, so quite a while away).

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I hope that your week has been going well and you got lots of reading done! Hopefully you’ll be seeing a little more of me over the next week (as long as work doesn’t take up all my time).

Sorry For Being MIA Lately

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So, I haven’t written a blog post in the last 4 days and I have a very good reason. If you follow me on twitter you might have seen a few of my tweets about the situation.

The last week or so, my boyfriend has been in a lot of pain with an abscess and we knew he would need surgery on it. He could barely walk and finally the doctors said he needed it removing (it should have been done days before, but it wasn’t). On Monday we had to rush him up to the hospital for an emergency operation, so he was kept in overnight and the operation was a success yesterday. He is now home and doing a lot better (I am currently playing nurse with all his medication and making sure he’s okay).

Due to all of this I haven’t been able to have any time to blog, read or even write. I’ve been too stressed to think about those things and even though it shouldn’t, it makes me feel guilty. Now that he is home and I know he’s on the mend I can get back to normal (or as close as possible), but it still may be a little quite on my blog for the rest of the week.

Sometimes unexpected things happen in life and it all grinds to a halt. It’s a part of life. I’m just extremely happy that everything is okay now and he isn’t in as much pain anymore (still a bit of pain from the large hole in his back though). I’ve have realised from this experience that I no longer feel faint from blood, which is great considering I have to look after him and do clean-up when things get a little messy.

I am sorry for the rambling in this post, but it’s also therapeutic in a way. I’ve been feeling a lot of stress and anxiety over the last few days, especially when it came to him staying overnight in the hospital. You always worry if they’re going to be okay and looked after well. Of course, all the doctors and nurses did a great job, especially making sure he was comfortable. And fingers crossed, we don’t need to make any more trips to the hospital.

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I hope the first half of your week has been going a lot better than mine!

Wrapping Up November & Getting Excited For Christmas!

We can officially get excited for Christmas now!

I have no idea where the last four weeks went, how is it the last month of 2017 already?! It seems that I filled my November with so many different activities that I didn’t notice it passing by at all. Not only was I searching for a new job (which I will be starting next month), my dad also came to visit and I decided to really knuckle down with my writing efforts.

While I didn’t take part of NaNoWriMo, I was writing throughout the whole month and the last week or so is when I really started churning out my novel at a rapid pace. I started the month with rewriting my first 15,000 words, as it was in first person POV and I wanted it to be third person (btw, so glad I made the change) and at this moment I am nearing 33,000 words. I am very happy with that and worked out that I am about a third of the way through writing (I have an ending in mind, it’s just filling in the gaps). So November has been a very successful month.

I also went ahead and deleted my old twitter account to set up a new one, which you can find here. It would be great if I could connect with more people, especially on different platforms. Also, I reached over 100 followers on my blog in less than two months which is great. While the numbers don’t matter too much, it is great to see that people enjoy what I am putting out there into the world.

Unfortunately, I haven’t done a lot of reading this month (but I am currently reading two books that should have reviews up next week if I’m lucky). So, here are the books I reviewed this November.

Books I Read…

Throne Of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

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It was so easy to give this book 5 stars after I read it. I cannot believe it took me so long to pick up this series and now I am waiting on the second one to be delivered to me. You can check out my review here.

A Darker Shade Of Magic by V. E. Schwab

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Again, another series I had heard so much about and finally picked up. Once again, I gave a book five stars because this was a perfect read and made me fall even more in love with the fantasy genre. If you want to read my thoughts, you can see my review here.

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Like I said, I didn’t read a lot this month and if I hadn’t hit a reading slump I’m sure I could have managed more (or at least finished Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard). Sometimes life gets in the way and I’m learning to accept that it’s okay. I’m just glad that I haven’t had a writer’s block on my novel in a while (I hope I haven’t jinxed myself).

Now that the holidays are coming up (and I’m away at the end of December in Ireland) I should have some more time to get reading when work finishes for the year.

How has your month been? Let me know in the comments below!

When Life Gets Stressful And The Writing Halts

 

This is a visual representation of how I am feeling.

You know that feeling when life is so crazy and stressful that you just wish you could sleep and have everything be okay when you wake up? That’s me at the moment.

The last week has been so busy that my brain feels fried. I’m currently looking for a new job which involves attending a lot of job interviews (I had 4 in a week), researching the companies and registering with recruitment agencies (which means filling out lots of paperwork). I feel that all my spare time is being taken up by those activities and I have no energy left for my writing.

Somehow I have managed to keep writing blog posts over the last week (how, I don’t know, but I won’t question it). Unfortunately, my novel has fallen to the wayside because I simply don’t have the energy. My brain doesn’t want to work and it’s frustrating. I have all these ideas that I keep writing down on little notepads and the story is coming together perfectly in my head. Just not on my open Word document. Which is constantly open.

I’m sure a lot of you have felt this way at some point when it comes to your own writing. Last night I managed to write a little, but as I was forcing the words out I felt that they weren’t working for me. So for the next couple of days I’m going to try and rest my brain. I will plonk myself down to watch some Outlander, exercise to get my blood pumping and pray that my motivation returns.

I wish I could say it was just my writing that was suffering, but I haven’t wanted to pick up a book to read either. It could be that I’m just not that into the one I currently have so I may be changing it soon. Either way, it’s not a great situation.

This may have been a little bit ranty (something I wasn’t sure I should post, but maybe you all have some advice for me), however I feel so much better talking about it. It’s amazing how easy it is to fall into a slump, but I am determined to get myself out of it.

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How has your week been going? I would love to know so leave me a little comment down below so we can chat!