Live bird through the cat door, kick butt query letters, and Nancy Drew's Birthday!

The jumping off incident in Dead Bird through the Cat Door the second in the Megabyte Mystery series (due out this fall) was inspired by my cat who caught a baby robin and brought it into the house through the cat door. We already know from her you tube video that Sprite the writer's cat doesn't like rejection.

What I found out tonight is that she likes to bring very large live birds into the house through the cat door! This was like a full sized Robin. The turkey curry I was cooking was abandoned (and ended up a little burnt) while I tried to get the bird out of the house. There were feathers flying, screeching (and that was just from me) and birds doing what birds do when cats scare the crap out of them. I managed to get the bird out the back door and it flew away. That's one for the bird kingdom and none for catdom. Just hope Sprite doesn't come across one of the skunks roaming the neighbourhood.

In other news:

I'm teaching a course through Chinook Learning Services (CBE Continuing Education). I wanted to call it writing kick butt queries but they wouldn't let me use the word 'butt". So the real name of the course is:

Writing Queries that Pop

It is designed for writers who are querying or have a manuscript they are about to submit. You submit your query letter in advance and be prepared to have it discussed in class for the purposes of making it stronger. The bulk of the class will be used to critique the participants' query letters. You've written your fiction manuscript. It's been through your writers' group and has undergone numerous rewrites. You think it's ready to send to publishers. You've done your research about which publishers would be appropriate and you've read their submission guidelines. Now you need to write a query letter that will get your submission pulled out of the slush pile. Check out the course code link below for more information:

course code 63268

May 8th 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

It is also scheduled for the evenings of May 10 & 12th, but for some reason it's not on the site. If you're interested in those dates you can enquire when you register.

So, in totally different news, Nancy Drew is 80 years old this year. Nancy you don't look a year older than your fictional character is supposed to be. Maybe that's the key to life long youth - be a fictional character! I was a voracious reader of Nancy Drew books as a youth and the twin protags in Dead Frog on the Porch are inspired by Nancy as they solve the mystery. As a youth I was inspired by Nancy's her independent nature. Dead Frog on the Porch had been called "Nancy Drew for the ipod generation." High praise indeed.

Have you ever wondered about Carolyn Keene, author of the Nancy Drew series. Well, Jennifer Fisher over at Nancy Drew Sleuth wondered and wrote this article about Carolyn Keene.


Dawn said…
I absolutely loved Nancy Drew as a youth and actually picked up some books at the book sale this weekend to remind me of why I fell in love with Nancy.

I love that your books are inspired by Nancy Drew. She's the reason I first became a journalist before becoming a novelist - and the reason my protagonist in Absolution is a myth buster :-)
Jan Markley said…
Thanks Dawn! I love that you love Nancy Drew! I can't wait to read your novel when it comes out and I'm sure your old high school would love to have you back to tell your story of how you got published!

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