Friday, June 13, 2008

Garage Sales, Anyone?

Jodi and I were up bright and early this morning and decided to check out garage sales before my workday began. I’d seen a couple of ads on craigslist that sounded great. I’m all about finding good deals on gently used kids’ stuff. We hopped in the car, picked up Nana (my mom), made a quick Dunkin’ Donuts stop (a rare treat!), and then we were off. Sadly, our bargain shopping spree wasn’t as successful as we’d hoped. The sales just didn’t measure up to their ads, or maybe we were beat to the really good stuff by even earlier birds. :) Oh well. Hopefully our exuberance worked off our high-calorie breakfast. And Jodi got to see four different doggies, so she was beyond happy.

Sometimes proposals from unpublished authors are like disappointing sale ads. I read the summary and first three chapters and they sound great, so I request the full manuscript, only to find that the whole book just isn’t what I hoped for. Maybe the quality of writing past chapter 3 is poor, or the plot weakens, or the story really isn’t Heartsong appropriate. Whatever the case, I always feel extra bad rejecting a full manuscript. I’m sure I’ve gotten the author’s hopes up high and that rejection hurts even worse. And unfortunately, I don’t have the time to give a specific critique. But unpublished authors who get asked for full manuscripts should take heart and be glad they even made it to “Round 2.” Be encouraged if your proposal shines brightly enough for an editor to want to see more. You’re obviously doing something right! Just keep learning, writing, and submitting, and don’t give up. And please know that this editor truly feels bad for raising hopes and then dashing them. :(

Who else out there likes to go garage sale-ing? What’s the best deal you’ve ever found?

Here's a picture of Jodi in a baby doll bed that was a garage sale find from Nana. Jodi loves it, though she's clearly not thrilled about being in it. :)


Janet Spaeth said...

I'm not a garage sale person but I am a Jodi person! She is totally adorable!

I envy you your Dunkin' Donuts stop. We don't have DD here, and it is a true sorrow, LOL.

It does sound like you have a fun excursion. A four doggie day! WOW!

Pam Hillman said...

A four doggie day. lol Too cute, Janet.

Living in the country, I've never developed a taste for garage sales. I'd have to drive a while to get to the really good ones where you can stop at several within a few blocks of each other.

It wasn't at a garage sale, but I bought a sequined jacket off ebay to wear to the 2004 RWA awards ceremony. After I got back home, I sold the jacket on ebay for almost as much as I paid for it. lol

And, there was another lady at RWA with the EXACT same jacket on, and we'd both paired "our" jacket with a long black skirt for a sparkly, extra dressy outfit.

I imagine there are lots of good stories to be found at garage sales, auctions, and estate sales.

Anybody remember the song about the guy who fell in love with the woman "in the long black dress" at the county auction? lol

Anita Mae said...

JoAnne - it's too cold this week for garage sales least where I live.

You mentioned proposals from unknown writers - my question is: If someone sends in a proposal for a series, and if you were interested, would you ask to see one ms at a time, or all the proposed ms's in the series?

(Anita taps her fingers on the edge of her laptop. Should she ask? JoAnne did bring up the topic first. Hmmmm. But, it's only been 6 months...better not. sigh)

Have fun looking for toys, JoAnne. After 4 kids, I know what a precious time this is for you and Jodie.

Have a God day.

Lynette Sowell said...

Oh, yes, I love garage sales. One of my most favorite finds is a brand-new Salad Shooter. :) I drag that out at least once a week. When the kids were younger, I found some great froo-froo little girl dresses for my daughter. I'm a big fan of thrift stores, too. :)

And my nearest Dunkin is about 58 miles away...sigh... :)

Debby Mayne said...

I used to buy a lot of outdoor toys for my kids at garage sales. Then after the kids outgrew them, I sold them at my garage sale. It was like renting toys. Their favorites were a Little Tikes car, a little plastic slide that they put in their wading pool, and a plastic picnic table. I think I sold them for what I paid for them because they held up so well.

Inspire said...

With the price of gas these days, garage sale searching is a thing of the past...for a while anyway. I love thrift shopping more, finding designer clothes with the tags still attached. One time I bought a beautiful silk sweater from a prestigious Potomac boutique for $1. The price tag said $140.

Thanks for sending out encouragement to all us writers that get our feet in the door with a request for a manuscript. It's hard then to have it closed on us.

I have a historical novel that I've been submitting for a year now to Christian agents, a few ABA too. I've had three requests for the full, and then told it wasn't for them but the writing was great. Another thing that can be frustrating, is there are so few CBA agents, and the majority have their client lists full.

linda ford said...

Jodi is so cute. Hugs.

I love garage sales for books. Research books. I have found the best books on a particular subject or place, some rare and unavailable anywhere else, at garage sales for 25c. Can't beat that.

Beth Goddard said...

I love garage saling! It's great when you find those things you want from Wal-mart for only a quarter. Ha!

My daughter and I occasionally spend Friday mornings thrift shopping. Sometimes we find nothing, other times we feel like we've hit the jackpot. We've done major shopping, have loads of stuff for under 20 bucks. It helps to satisfy that need to shop, without spending ten times that much.


Carrie Turansky said...

Hi joAnne,
Oh, I love garage sailing, too! This past Saturday our church held our annual yard sale. We made over $2000 and all the money goes toward missions. We are sending teams to Beliez, India, and central PA this summer.

I am always on the lookout for books, toys and clothes for my grandsons. : )


Patti Moore said...

When I was teaching school (which was up until last year) I had found some childrens' books, puzzles, etc. to use for my students (Kdg., First grade). Although I don't go to many sales, in our area it'a a regular "hobby" for some folks! ~ Every picture I see of little Jodi reminds me even more of my Amy (now 23) when she was that age....PRECIOUS !! Thanks for sharing your wisdom AND pictures of Jodi. :)
Patti Moore

Rhonda said...

I confess... I'm a yard sale junkie! My favorite find is a book shelf. It was all wood, not dents or scratches and I got it for 10.00!! Love it.

Jodi is a doll! She reminds me of my grand daughter Atty. I think they are about the same age. Atty is 19 months.

Mary Connealy said...

My sister in law is the garage sale GURU. She lives close to a really nice neighborhood (Not that there's anything WRONG with her neighborhood) and comes up with great stuff to dress her six children. Leather jackets and good quality dress clothes. She's a genius at this.