Okay, here's the book update for anyone who's still paying attention to it all.
I have submitted to half of the agents on my list (8-10 I've already submitted to, about that many left to approach). Of those agents, one responded and asked for a partial manuscript to read. She hasn't read it yet (is currently working on June submissions...I submitted in July). This is actually a great ratio, so I'm not disappointed that this is all I heard from. I haven't submitted to the remaining agents because, frankly, I got burned out. Submitting is HARD work, and not half so much fun as actually writing the novel itself. On top of that, the agents I saved for last are ones who are pickier and more specific about their query standards - they want very detailed, specific info on me, the book, etc., and pretty much all of them want the information in completely different formats. So that essentially means I have to tailor-make each submission for each of the remaining agents, and each submission will take a couple of hours minimum to construct. Yuck. So I put on my Procrastination Pants back in August and I haven't taken them off yet :) But I will. Promise.
For a while I've been considering posting A Fat Girl's Revolution on a separate blog that I would link to this one, and post all of my writings and work on that blog, open to whoever, to hopefully bless someone else. I considered posting a chapter a week of the book. Publishers and agents would call this utter foolishness, but I figured, hey, if it's not going to get published anyway, why not share it some other way, to encourage and help like I intended? However, since then my mother-in-law, Vicky, has read the book, and though she is family, she's honest and direct, and I knew she would tell me what she really thought. I also consider her to be a good judge of such things - she reads a lot, is a teacher, and is really smart.
Soooo....a few weeks ago she called me and told me firmly that she really didn't think I should post it on a blog. She really thinks it's publishable and should be on the shelves with other Christian fiction. And in the past day or so, she's even written a blog post, just about my book! To read what she had to say, go HERE. I was humbled, excited, and motivated by her response. So I've decided to give these remaining agent submissions everything I've got, and continue praying about it.
That said, I've begun working on a sequel of sorts, which involves one of the minor characters of A Fat Girl's Revolution. And I'm just excited about the plot, characters and events of this novel as I was about the first, which I didn't think would ever be possible! I've written 25 pages total, and the entire book is outlined on my computer. I've known from the beginning exactly where the story is headed and where it will end up, which is a FABULOUS feeling. I don't have a title yet. Maybe when I've written a bit more, but it's hard trying to come up with another original title that fits with the first book. I would say this book will go much more quickly and smoothly than the first, but I'm a lot busier with other crafty/cleaning projects around our house, so it's not getting worked on quite as regularly right now. And honestly, I should probably put the second one to the side until I've exhausted all my options for publication with the first one.
So there's the big fat hairy update I know you've all been sitting on pins and needles waiting for :)