Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Kickin’ It Old School

As soon as I get this turn table set up, I’ll have time to talk with you about a little problem we writers face.  Hold on juuuuust a second.


*testing, testing*

OK, that's good. I think I finally got the reverb just right.

So, what’s this problem then?

Come on.You already know it. There’s writing and then there’s promoting your writing. We have to do both, but let’s be real, you practically need a split personality to do both things well, and, really, who can be bothered with all the medication you have to take for that?

You know me. I’m always thinking about stuff. Then comparing that stuff to other stuff using like or as. So here’s a useful comparison to illustrate the problem: writing is like singing in the shower whereas promoting your work is like giving a rap concert at Madison Square Garden, which incidentally isn’t even square. (Who knew?)

Hence, the turn table.

See, I’ve now got a few rap songs to help me promote my stuff, and I'm going to share one with you, my friends. I've generously adapted the lyrics so it's suitable for querying. I'm telling you, nobody else is going to stand a chance with some standard query format once you've included this song with your first ten pages.

Of course, once I put this out there, everyone else will know you sampled me. But whatever. Lots of rappers do that nowadays, so it's cool. Just make sure you show me the proper respect. That way we don't have to get into one of those messy rap feuds.

Here we go.

Oh, wait. First, put on these gold chains.

And then a pair of these.

(Fine, you can borrow my track suit, too. Just don't spill anything on it at the club, even that super preminum vodka Diddy is pushing these days.)
OK, NOW you're ready for The Query Rap. 

You got manuscripts, piled high as the sky,
Some are pretty good, some’ll make you cry,

But the words, the stories – they ain’t mind-blowin’,
Cuz they all about the tellin’, not about the showin’

I tell you what, I’m gonna make you gush,
So move aside them big piles of slush,

It ain’t no lie, man, I got the cure,
I can rhyme with orange, I can rhyme inure,

My skillz da best, there ain’t no debate,
All my scenes and plots, yeah, they resonate.

Don’t care how many books you already bought,
Each sentence of mine is so finely wrought,

Even that Franzen dude was heard to say,
“God, if only I could write that way.”

So if you pass me up, I be worried for you,
Might call your mama and your daddy too.

Don’t want you livin’ out your golden years,
Sittin’ in the home, drownin’ in your tears,

With enough regrets to fill a chasm,
All because you lacked enthusiasm.

If you ready to deal, then come jump my fence,
And flash me some dead presidents.

My book gets away, don’t wanna wear your shoes,
Cuz no amount of sex, drugs, or booze,

Gonna take away that awful sting,
Of missing out on The Next Big Thing.

(OK, seriously, I tried to actually sing this all the way through, but I nearly blacked out from laughing so hard. If you're down in the dumps about querying, give it a whirl. Guaranteed to lighten your spirits and amuse your pets, friends, and significant others.)