Saturday, March 03, 2007

And now for some good news

So if the commentary from Rachel, et al. on my hook isn't that helpful/great, at least I do have these tidbits to bolster my spirits somewhat:

1. About a month or so ago, Agent Kristin Nelson wrote this post* wherein she said

Well, there are leaders in each genre and try as they might, some writers can’t help but be a little derivative of the leaders in their field. It might be unconscious—the mimicking of a premise or a world building construct or what have you.

I sent her an e-mail, asking for clarification on the line between "premise mimicking" and writing in a subgenre/niche market such as Scottish time-travel. Did the fact that my modern heroine travels back in time to Scotland make my book too derivative? To which she responded:

You can certainly share a premise with a leader in the field. That's fine.
It's when the story itself (events that are happening, the characters, the
type of world-bulding) feel too similar to what is already out there that
you'll run into trouble.

So, according to her, using the time-travel premise isn't a problem. I know my events are unique (inasmuch as I took several of the main ones from history, and it's a different time period than Diana's books, so no overlap). My characters certainly aren't Claire and Jamie clones. Elspeth's a black belt, for crying out loud. And as for world building, I'm doing all my own research and just modeling it after 17th century Scotland, as accurately as I can. If she means how I accomplish the time-travel, that's totally sci-fi: wormholes and higher dimensions and whatnot. Not even a mention of a stone circle. *g*

2. Agent Jenny Rappaport said the following as part of her recent post*:

I love historical romances. Regencies... oh boy, those are my favorites. Also Victorian romances or even Georgian (17th century). I like plucky heroines and smart heroes, but I don't want it to be the type of variety where the hero is like, "I will just throw you into bed and ravage you now." I have a soft spot for bluestockings... educated females who love to read (I wonder who that sounds like? *looks innocently around*). I'm not as crazy about medieval romances, purely because they're very often inaccurate. I really like the historical details to be accurate. I would love to see a good romance set in 1600s England; there are so few of those.

The key things I pulled out of that were "I really like the historical details to be accurate" - which I am a stickler for, so nice to know some people notice/appreciate it. But this is the best: "I would love to see a good romance set in 1600s England" - would Scotland do? I got your 1600's right here! *g*

*quoted under fair use

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