I seem to be on a site with distinguished published people What's an agent?

How the UK Royal Mail is suffering in view of the huge amount of paper en route to slush piles is a mystery to me.

Crime then. I have a speculative thriller within which there are police, villains and a murder or two. Is it OK to paste the first chapter as a blog intro? Or is that wicked self promotion? Protocol guidance requested. I could go look in Help or FAQ but it's a bummer when you ask the question which is a. obvious to all but you or b. Nobody asked the ? so it does not qualify as the 'F' part.

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The Blog section is full of blatant self promotion. No sure if any of it works. Also not sure if there are guidelines against posting large chunks of text. Mind you, people have posted short pieces asking for input.
Are you published? Are you asking what an agent is?
Hi Thanks

I was joking about agents - me being neither published nor represented. Straightforward question is - do you critique, advise etc and, if so, do i put it on the blog?
I don't think this is a critique site. Sometimes people comment on short pieces. You might scour about a bit for critique groups. They are sometimes very useful.
This isn't a critique site, and in general, I advise against posting work that hasn't been signed to a publisher in the public domain. Some contracts specifically forbid posting a contracted work online, or posting more than a certain number of words, and by doing so you may have to explain the existence of the work online (and hope the publisher will make an exception).

The other question to ask is why. Throwing the doors open for unfiltered feedback is a potential recipe for disaster. There's an old joke, that if you have 9 editors in a room reviewing a work you'll end up with 10 opinions. In order for feedback to be helpful you have to know you can trust the source of the feedback, and feel the person is trying to assess the work based on what you're trying to do with it, not just trying to make a circle become a square. Depending on where you're at in the writing process unfiltered feedback could be devastating. Several years ago I received feedback from an author and didn't write for a month after that. I've known other people who've had feedback from other aspiring authors and lost more time than that. It's important that you be ready for feedback, and that you trust the source so that it doesn't paralyze the creative process for you.

I agree regarding some people's opinions. I have had some helpful pointers but I noticed - given that we can see other's mistakes better than we see our own - where trading reviews is concerned, you can go back and find they have ignored completely every suggestion made. This includes passive verbs, over elaborate speech tags (e.g. she expostulated wildy - he asked enquiringly in an interrogative manner :) )
and other things we are warned against.

Problem is - when rejection slips pop onto the mat - it gets a bit lonely :)
Wow, this is a really excellent response.
This might be a better place for that. http://reviewabook.ning.com/. Be prepared for a variety of opinions, because Susan's reply is spot on. Before you submit it to an unfiltered critique be sure it is as good as you can get it, then be prepared to disregard what you don't agree with. And keep in mind, you will get a few responses from some who could be generously classified as idiots.
Oh, and wear armor.
Armor - agreed - idiots agreed. Begs the question why go there? What is a filtered critique? One you pay for presumably. Thanks for the response
Agreed, I have used some sites to post work that has been in the trunk for a long long time. If I get possitive feedback, I re-write and submit, but most of the time it goes back to collecting dust. One of the better sites for feedback is www.absolutewrite.com.



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