Friday, May 27, 2011

Firsts Fridays with Agent Acquired, Monica B.W.

If you haven't signed up for the Gearin' Up to Get an Agent Blogfest, now's your time!

What do you know, it's Friday and I have a sweet treat to kick off your weekend!  Monica B.W. recently has a new addition to her AGENT!  And she has stopped by to answer some of the burning questions those of us lacking the illustrious agent have.
Monica Bustamante Wagner is a YA fiction writer represented by Michelle Wolfson of Wolfson Lit. She was born in Peru and raised in Chile. With a sister in Australia and her father living in Ethiopia, she’s had no choice but to be a bilingual world traveler.  And she loves it!  She travels around the globe with her husband and three kids, learning about different cultures and countries.  After earning a bachelor’s degree in business and a master’s degree in HR, Monica settled with her husband in a very small town in Chile, near the Pacific Ocean. Visit Monica’s website at

DB: I see you write paranormal/fantasy (I love it!), where do you get your ideas?

MBW: First of all, let me thank you for inviting me to your blog today! I feel honored.

DB: Likewise!  I'm thrilled to have you:)

MBW: Hmm, so where do I get my ideas from?  I’ve always loved paranormal things like ghosts and mysterious orbs appearing in pictures and parallel universes, etc. So I guess my ideas come from my obsession about these things. To tell you the truth, I once spent like 6 months trying to have an out-of-body experience…but failed miserably, lol. So there. I’m a little crazy and obsessed!

 DB: Now that is a killer interview in and of itself! 

How do you go about plotting your novels? Or are you just a write it first kind of gal?

MBW: I have a very unusual way of plotting. I talk about the outline with my hubby—and usually it ends up being a long-winded monologue that only I understand. But talking about my book with somebody else makes me come up with ideas.  And then, when I start writing, I pretty much know where things are going.

DB: Aww, your hubby is your sounding romantic:)

I love Elana Johnson’s book, ‘From the Query to the Call’.  How long was that journey for you?

MBW: I <3 Elana!

My journey wasn’t that traditional since I didn’t get my agent through a query letter. It was through a contest in which 13 agents read the first pages of some mss, and they picked some to read more. And I got picked! (Squee!)

So if you count from the day of the contest until I got the offer, it was only like 10 days. But if you count from the day I started querying, it would be like 3 months.  AND if you count from the day I started writing my very first novel till I got the offer, it would be like 4 years!

DB: Ooo, I didn't know that.  How cool!

Can you tell us what your agent has of yours that he/she is trying to get published?

MBW: I signed with my agent just a few months ago, so I’m not on submission yet. But the good news is that we’re going out with a manuscript soon!

And guess what this YA ms is about…  yeah, you’re right! About out-of-body experiences. :)

DB: Can't wait to get my fingers on that one!

Do you have anything new on the works?

MBW: Umm… it depends on what you mean by new. I’m rewriting a novel from scratch. This is the ms I queried like a year ago, got some requests but in the end nothing happened.  And now that I’ve let it simmer, I think I know what was wrong with it. But I still love the idea and I want it to work! Crossing my fingers that it will now.

DB: Good luck on it!

What is something fun about you that we just have to know?

MBW: About 11 years ago, my boyfriend and I went to India. And we decided to get married there. So one hot afternoon, we went to look for a brahmin to officiate the wedding.  And when we found him, he said that in India, you couldn't marry any day.  You had auspicious dates depending of whom you marry.  And he picked the most auspicious day for us.  And it was THE NEXT DAY!!  So we had to prepare our wedding in less than 24 hours! We ran around looking for a beautiful sari for me and for toe-rings and rice and clothing for my boyfriend and many other things.  It was crazy! But in the end, it was really fun, and we got married there, and just a few friends attended the ceremony. 

 DB: That is some serious getting married in style:) 

Monica it has been a blast rehashing your journey to getting an agent.  I look forward to seeing your books on shelves in the future!

Haven't had enough of Monica yet?  Check out her super addictive blog, Love YA.

Until next time...
Keep writing.  Keep learning.


Anita Grace Howard said...

Great interview, gals. :) And your wedding story is AMAZING! Congrats on the new agent, and good luck on the submission process. Exciting things are ahead for you!

Kimberly Sabatini said...

Okay- I have to see wedding photos!!!!! NOW!!!!

BTW-Monica is the BEST agency sistah!!!!

Patti said...

Great interview and I agree those must be some great wedding photos.

Leah Petersen said...

Not your run-of-the-mill author here. :)

Deana said...

Anita, I agree! I see good things on Monica's horizon:)

Me too Kimberly!

Leah, bad I can't be a world traveller as I write:)

CherylAnne Ham said...

Great interview. Monica, you sound like you're so much fun!

When I was a kid I was convinced I could learn how to move things with my mind! LOL

Congrats on finding an agent and best of luck with your book. :)

Unknown said...

Hey Anita! Thank you SO MUCH :D

Kim and Patti: Sadly, I only have ONE picture!! But I'll scan it and post it in a couple of weeks on my blog ;)

Leah: <3 for you!

Deana: Again thanks so much for having me!! :D

CherylAnne: OMG!! When I was a kid I was convinced that if I practiced hard enough I could move things with my mind, too!!! :P

Book Lover said...

That's amazing you got an agent through a contest! Congrats

Deana said...

CherylAnn I'd be lying if I didn't say I tried to move a mountain or two in my day...hehe

Monica, your welcome...thank you:)

Mandie, isn't that crazy! I love that there are more options than the dreaded query:)

Theresa Milstein said...

@ Monica, congratulations on getting an agent. Good luck with your book. Nice to know that these contests can lead somewhere.

What a great wedding story!

Jennifer Hillier said...

I never knew Monica got married in India! What a great story!

Great interview guys. I've been following Monica's journey for a long time now and will continue to watch her soar. :)

Deana said...

I agree Theresa!

Jennifer, I think we can see why you have been following her journey...pretty cool gal:)

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

Fun interview. I love the marriage story! : )

Amanda Hoving said...

What an interesting life! So glad to find out more about Monica -- I always enjoy her blog. Thanks for sharing this interview.

Leslie S. Rose said...

I love Monica's blog. It was fun to hear a little chat. Good luck on submissions. I'll cross fingers and toes. Thanks Deana and Monica.

Deana said...

Thanks Cynthia, Amanda and Leslie for your comments:)