Queries, Qualms, & Quirks

Queries, Qualms, & Quirks

Queries, Qualms, & Quirks asks published authors to share their successful query letter and discuss their journey from first spark to day of publication. Author Sarah Nicolas interviews authors of all genres about how they got started writing, their writing process, getting their book deal, and their experiences with publication.

Episodes

December 2, 2021 27 min

Young Adult Author Kyrie McCauley joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss finding a supportive community early on, sobbing at her first edit letter, writing about tough topics, writing at the zoo, Pitch Wars, the mountains and valleys of publishing, and what she misses about querying. ✦ 

Kyrie McCauley is the author of If These Wings Could Fly and We Can Be Heroes. She lives near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with her...

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Mystery Author Leslie Budewitz joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss the lawyer to writer pipeline, Sisters in Crime, when the struggle was finding publishing information instead of curating it, the pre-internet writing community, writing fiction feeling too daunting at first, publishing as a business, and not having a linear path. ✦ 

Leslie Budewitz is a three-time Agatha Award winner and the best-selling author...

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Young Adult Author Dante Medema joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss having a massive earthquake the day your book goes to auction, being overwhelmed by writers conferences, knowing when a book is the one, the non-glamorous life of an author, ten years to overnight success, debuting during a pandemic, and separating the business from your ego. ✦ 

Dante Medema is the author of THE TRUTH PROJECT and MESSAGE NOT FO...

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Romance Author Farah Heron joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss the benefits of being a joiner, the problem with being Canadian, DVPit, finding your genre, the important of publicists, deciding if writing is worth the stress, the danger of self-rejection, being a chapter President during the RWA implosion, and nothing being more important than the writing. ✦ 

Farah Heron is a critically acclaimed author of roman...

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Horror Author Jessica Lewis joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss going from self-insert fanfiction to original fiction, the support of NaNoWriMo buddies, entering all the publishing contests, Pitch Wars, the pressure of writing for money, mental health, and trouble coming up with titles. ✦ 

Jessica Lewis is a Black author and receptionist. She lives with her way-funnier-than-her grandmother in Alabama. When she ...

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Young Adult Author Annie Sullivan joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss getting two requests out of a hundred queries, why “write something new” and “don’t give up on a book you love” are not contradictory, learning about publishing rights and contracts, the migration of goalposts, leaving Easter Eggs for her readers, and not putting time limits on your self. ✦ 

Annie Sullivan is the author of three young adult f...

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Middle Grade Author Sarah McGuire joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss shelving a book after six years, being orphaned by your publisher, the revelation courtesy of her opera-singer sister, creating Egmont’s Last List, learning who to take which critiques from, and imposter syndrome. ✦ 

Sarah McGuire is math teacher who sailed around the world aboard a floating college campus. She writes fairy tales and fun fant...

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Historical Crime Author John Copenhaver joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss getting an MFA, querying via snail mail, changes in the mystery genre landscape, what happens if you never get published, and the importance of forming relationships in the industry. ✦ 

John Copenhaver’s historical crime novel, Dodging and Burning, won the 2019 Macavity Award for Best First Mystery Novel and garnered Anthony, Strand Cri...

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Science Fiction author AJ Super joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss not getting into Pitch Wars, how far kindness can take you, a successful query letter that is not perfect, how long it takes to put out a good book, mental health challenges, and taking measured risks. ✦ 

Angela/AJ Super is a 2021 debut author. Her space opera, Erebus Dawning and its sequel, A Star Reborn have recently released from Aethon Book...

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Picture Book Author Kira Bigwood joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss querying for eight years, how many picture books you should have ready before submitting, the process of writing a picture book without an illustrator, querying too soon, the importance of making connections, and how making a picture book is truly a team effort. ✦ 

Kira Bigwood is an advertising copywriter turned children’s author. Her debut p...

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Mystery Author Kellye Garrett joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss getting an agent offer at a bar, Pitch Wars, when your publisher abruptly shuts down, writing a book because of a headline, selling a book after a year versus five days, waiting ten months to announce a book deal, and never winning NaNoWriMo. ✦ 

Kellye Garrett is the author of the upcoming suspense novel Like A Sister and the Detective by Day lig...

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Middle Grade author Deva Fagan joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss having a contract cancelled, leaving multiple agents, feeling like a failure despite selling three books, how referrals aren’t a golden ticket, when your fears come to pass, and asking for what you need.  ✦

Deva Fagan is the author of middle grade fantasy novels Nightingale, Rival Magic and more. She lives in Maine with her husband and her dog. ...

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Speculative Fiction author EJ Wenstrom joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss taking a chance on a small press, not being too precious with your work, the zero draft method, not staying with an agent who’s not a good fit, writing off trend, and positive ADHD representation. ✦ 

E. J. Wenstrom believes in complicated heroes, horrifying monsters, purple hair dye and standing to the right on escalators so the left sid...

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Science Fiction Author Mike Chen  joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss resurrecting shelved novels, querying transitioning from paper to digital, going to acquisitions five times in 20 months, releasing a pandemic book just before a pandemic started, acquisitions nerves, drafting in layers, and getting better with every attempt.  ✦

Mike Chen is the author of We Could Be Heroes, Here And Now And Then, and A Begin...

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Thriller Author Tammy Euliano joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss putting yourself out there, getting killer author blurbs, the way writing is harder than being a doctor, the exercise that gets her unstuck, and the importance of writing community. ✦ 

Tammy’s writing is inspired by her day job as a physician, researcher and educator at the University of Florida. Her short fiction has been recognized by Glimmer T...

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Middle Grade author Adrianna Cuevas joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss writing for a specific audience, the kindness of other writers, making massive revisions, writing with the television on, and fear of not being good enough.  ✦ 

Adrianna Cuevas is the author of the Pura Belpre honor book The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez and the upcoming Cuba in My Pocket. She is a first-generation Cuban-American originally...

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Historical romance author Royaline Sing and her literary agent Sara Megibow join Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss querying an agent with a publication offer in-hand, Sara’s normal submission-reading process, finding the time to write, breaking the rules, trusting your partners, and surprises being the norm in the publishing industry. ✦ 

Royaline Sing writes through the noise of my lovely two kids, a very supportiv...

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Picture Book Author Tara Lazar joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss how to do picture book market research, writing in between wiping baby butts, publishing surprises, coming up with book titles before anything else, figuring out what works for you, and not having a writing schedule. ✦ 

Street magic performer. Award-winning ice sculptor. Hog-calling champion. These are all things Tara Lazar has never been. Inste...

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Contemporary Fiction Author Suzanne Park joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss going to acquisitions (multiple times) without getting a book deal, repurposing life stories for fiction, the impact writing for standup has on her novels, the lack of a linear path after Pitch Wars, and amassing a thousand rejections.  ✦ 

Suzanne Park is a Korean-American author who was born and raised in Tennessee. In her former life...

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Romance novelist Kait Ballenger joins Queries, Qualms, & Quirks this week to discuss not meeting publisher's sales expectations, ?writing on the tail end of a trend, getting a starred review without knowing what it means, only writing what you love, and getting an agent after a literal elevator pitch. ?

Kait Ballenger is the award-winning author of the Seven Range Shifter paranormal romance series, where she weaves captivat...

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