Although 2011 is far from over, I’m eager to figure out what the statistics might be able to show me about my business. Fairly consistently, as it turns out, I must read a dozen full manuscripts to find one that I like and consider commercially viable, so I can offer to represent the author to publishers. I don’t know how I can make the reading part of the client selection process more efficient.
Over the past few years, I’ve tinkered with methods of discovering a variety of manuscripts from which to cull the few I’d like to read. This part of the processgathering prospectsis more variable, and I continue to experiment.
I’ve always known that I enjoy foreign voices. Like poetry, a novel written in a foreign voice requires of a reader some extra effort and concentration. Unusual syntax slows comprehension slightly, which can make reading more of a feastor a convivium, as proponents of the Slow Food movement would describe the pleasure.
Elegant writing has become rare in the US, but I still appreciate it in essays and in fiction with intricate, sophisticated plots. Precision makes me happy. The purposeful use of malapropisms can be cool. So, go for it. Claim they were used to create the voice.