Crapometer Status-uhh. Thursday??

That's all for a while (today).

Remember, this is NOT a contest. I'm not going to ask you to submit work to the agency. No one wins a book contract or an agency contract. If you thought that was the prize, you have us confused with Sobol guys.

Killer Yapp has revised his Christmas List after finding Nat Sherman online so I think we're off to Fifth Avenue to see if there's any bounce left in our Amex.

Hi Ho!

For those of you confused about the recurring reference to #239, it's not the hook that was the template, that was the post where I wrote out the template.

Here it is again.

X is the main guy;
Y is the bad guy;
they meet at Z and all L breaks loose.
If they don't solve Q, then R starts and if they do it's Lsquared.


Rainbow's Margarite said...

Killer Cheri,
ENJOY!, have a nice puff for me. Add a little good port to the mixture. I'm sure you are feeling sorry neglected about now. If it wasn't for the fact my person sneaks most of her ppeks at the crap-o-meter during working hours, I doubt I'd see her much either! Ah, three days coming up with both people and the grandparents! Bliss, Tummy Rubs!
Maggie Bichon

Anonymous said...

Boy R really hit the fan at work today....Hey, I like that. Again MS, help with the hook is the greatest gift you can give us. Thanx.

Jim Winter said...

You're not doing this like Sobol? Does this mean I can take all that gin back to the liquor store?

Anonymous said...

p.s. I hope it's not my mother that's bothering you about the "prize".

You know, "My sons writing is the best out of all these hooks. Throw a rock at him and he'll write you novel. I should know because I've done it."

Terry said...

X is the main guy;
Y is the bad guy;
they meet at Z and all L breaks loose.
If they don't solve Q, then R starts and if they do it's Lsquared.

For this alone, you should never have to pay for another bucket of gin again. Ever. These words are going right next to my monitor.

Anonymous said...

What no Mercedes convertible??!!

K said...

K is screwed.
K didn't know the hook formula.
MS is going to send K on her way faster than GC can pull in an Oscar nod for TGG.

K wipes tear and moves on.

Inkwolf said...

I get a better idea of what I've done horribly wrong with every post.

Thanks, Miss Snark! I look forward to my upcoming number with trepidation and forebodings of impending doom! :D

And the word verifications doesn't help: tuzdark!

BernardL said...

You're the best, Snark. I'm already so tired of hooks, I've drawn a line through literary agent as a career change. :)

Anonymous said...

Tuz'dark and stormy night....

M. G. Tarquini said...

I think a couple letters of that template alphabet are missing from my hook.

yeah yeah yeah. I know. Focus and start over.

Angus Weeks said...

I've been taking notes as I read the advice given for each hook. I'd already copy/pasted that little formula from the post it was initially mentioned in since I thought it was excellent advice.

My favourite so far is: mention a winged horse and you'd better use it by the end of the show. I suspect my own hook is full of 'winged horses'.

JPD said...

I disagree... I think it IS a contest, much like life itself. But in this contest the winners receive nothing. The losers, well, we are what we are...

JPD (Darwin award winner in the CoM of life.)

Anonymous said...

I can see I'm not the only one wishing that I could rewrite and resubmit now that I've seen the first 280 + comments. =P Oh, well. At least I have some idea what to expect when my moment in the snarklight comes....

Dave said...

Shopping! SHOPPING - In NYC

Macy's, Lord and Taylor, Bloomingdales,

BLOOMIES! that's it, Miss Snark shops at Bloomies.

And then, meets Clooney on the Green for a quick bite before their trip to Tiffany's.

It's going to be a powder blue box Christmas!


katiesandwich said...

I noticed that three hooks today contained the word fey. And not one until today. Does anyone else find this a freaky coincidence?

Anonymous said...

I think it is wise that you continue to post that this isn't a contest but, maybe I can suggest to also post that stealing someone’s "hook" (the ones that past MS inspection) is considered plagiarism (even the best worse ones as well.)

I am not a psychic but I can imagine some fool might think it wise to steal the hook and enter a few under their name in a contest. IT IS NOT WISE to do so!

I wonder if anyone has had that thought pop into their heads?

McKoala said...

hee hee inkwolf - try my word verification


Which is probably what I have done.

Happy shopping Miss Snark!

Writerious said...

I'm with Inkwolf and K -- I'm already predicting why my hook is going to go down in flames. Nameless evil (well, the evil DOES have a name and a face, but it's not in the query), starting off with backstory, and an, "Ohmighod, evil's taking over the world, save my baby!" ending.

Or Her Snarkness might surprise me and actually like a couple of the bits in it. So I won't withdraw yet.

Anonymous said...

Why "they solve" when it's two enemies we're talking about?

It seems that this format cannot accomodate a complex novel with more than one subplot.

I would highly value some clarification. . .

Anonymous said...

My book is not YA but features teens. My book is not funny. I have a winged horse that doesn't reappear. I may get a WTF. I may get yes yes yes. I may get drunk. Naw.

MWT said...

What can you possibly hope to win by stealing the text of someone else's hook?? Think about it. Suppose someone stole a winning hook. They send it to an agent. Agent asks for partials to the manuscript. What does the thief do then, exactly? :p

At best, people could be scanning through the entries for ideas on what to write themselves. But ideas are cheap. The writing is the hard part. Also, two people can take the exact same idea and end up with completely different stories.

I will admit that I've gotten a few ideas here and there on what to do with my own novel series, by seeing what other people have come up with. But I'm not interested in writing their books for them. I just want to figure out how to write mine.

Rope said...

Miss Snark, you really are a most repulsive person. I hope that you see the error of your arrogance soon, before writers who employ you to represent them go elsewhere.

Merry Christmas

nitwitness said...

In mathematics, you would use Calculus to solve a problem.
In writing, you now have the discipline of 'Crapulus':

X is the main guy;
Y is the bad guy;
they meet at Z and all L breaks loose.
If they don't solve Q, then R starts and if they do it's Lsquared.

Thank you, Miss Snark. (Thinking back to remember if any of the nuns in catholic school wore red stilettos. The ruler she uses on knuckles seems awfully familiar.)

Angus Weeks said...

Like mwt said, there's not much point to stealing a hook.

If, anonymous, you meant that one's idea could be stolen - well, I used to think such things could happen, when I was young and hoarded my ideas like precious metals.

Now I realise that real writers have more ideas than they could possibly hope to write, and those persons who need to stoop to 'stealing' someone else's, are not capable of writing a decent novel anyway so are no threat whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

I'm assuming rope is one of those that got a WTF or equivalent and didn't read the disclaimer that MS put up about "don't enter your work if you have thin skin." I'm going to reply to that, and anyone else that's taking that attitude. It may well be that I get Snarked and get some snide remark about not having a clear cut antagonist or some other such comment Miss Snark has been throwing out there, but I would certainly prefer to know the truth over being placated as though my mom was reading it.

Get a clue rope, those of us that are taking this seriously NEED to be told if it's shit so we don't waste our time if we need to move on to writing something else. If you feel like flaming me and ridiculing mine, fine, I'm #430. If she rips me, I won't feel swell, but I'll know where I stand, and that's a hell of a lot better than not knowing. Swing away Miss Snark, swing away.

Anonymous said...

Adressing the notion of plagiarism, I have to confess that the thought crossed my mind that someone would steal one of my ideas, but then stealing someone else's seems almost impossible. I suppose there's a possibility that someone will steal the idea for a gizmo or a plot twist, but it's likely that, anyone that's desperate enough to steal something like that doesn't have the talent to come up with the rest of the pieces to put around it. It's my opinion that a good writer will find something interesting to write about because that's how their brain works, the same idea that sems like a great original notion in his hands will seem clumsy and ameteurish in the hands of someone that doesn't have the mental capacity to come up with it on their own.

cm allison said...

anon 12/22. re: Rope & Rope
I'm with you. I may well go down like a lead balloon, zapped with a snarkified round from the cluegun. However, I'd rather get that and know I just didn't have it together (esp. after reading all the posts before me), and learn, than get those oh, so ambiguous, "not for us, perhaps another agency" form letters. Rope, I don't know about you, but I'm learning much, like a cram session. I hope to learn more. I hope not to get snarked, but if I do, I hope to get one line to head me in the right direction. So be happy you didn't have to pay for this with anything but your anonymous pride, and learn something yourself. Don't try to "snark" Miss Snark! or the Boojum will get you!

Hoyt Peterson said...

"Get a clue rope, those of us that are taking this seriously NEED to be told if it's shit so we don't waste our time if we need to move on to writing something else."

I couldn't agree more with the anon who typed this. I am 564 and wait eagerly to be snarked. Sure, I have had friends read mine, but it's not the same as some one like Miss Snark taking a look at it and offering even the briefest of critiques.

Alley Splat said...

Wait, what's that creaking noise?
Too much Rope, I think...

Rope, we entered this contest because we wanted criticism; it wasn't mandatory. Personally I'd much rather be snarked deservedly than be under the illusion that I can write when I can't. It's much easier to improve if you know you need to (I certainly lived up to my name!).

MWT said...

Hmmm. I must be the only person who read rope's comments as sarcasm. That is, Miss Snark requested that we stop being nice, and to be snarky instead, and so rope was saying the exact opposite of what he really meant. Thereby to avoid onion duties et al. But then again, maybe I'm just reading too much into things.

Back to idea plagiarism. I've seen other people's plot devices (gizmos, twists) that made me think, "hey neat! I could fit something like that in my story, to fill up that gaping hole I've been stuck about." The key being that I already have a story to put it in, and modify as needed. It's okay to "steal" ideas, because by the time your story is all done, chances are it'll have become something so different that no one will know where it came from anyway.

By the same token, I've also seen a lot of plot devices, gizmos, twists, even names ... that look almost exactly like things I've been doing. I could sit here and think "But that's mine! I thought of it first!" but that would be pointless.

Bottom line: there really is no such thing as an original idea. It's not the idea that's important. It's what you do with it.