Manuscript Submitted. Wish me Luck.


So I just submitted my manuscript to my first round of literary agents. I plan on getting back to writing regular posts to my blog now that I’ve completed this monstrous task. The finished product is 290 pages (approximately 75,000 words). Below is a sample of my query letter:

Dear XXXX,

My name is Kelly Jude Melerine and I’m a proud father of a teenage son named Cade. Cade has autism. Cade has love. Cade has soul. And to those that think I should place Cade in a home, Cade has a home. I write about autism and the effects that it has on my household in my memoir Don’t Squeeze the Spaceman’s Taco. Why the odd title? It’s just one of my son’s unique phrases that we refer to as “Cadeisms.”

My book is very honest and filled with love, laughter and tears. It also provides a glimpse into my own personal childhood growing up along the bayous of southeastern Louisiana with a mother who suffered from mental illness.

This isn’t a typical self-help guide to coping with autism and nor should it be treated as such. Life with autism is anything but typical. This is a story of family. Not the type that you see on TV commercials with perfectly decorated homes and saintly well-behaved children. But the type of family that breaks the rules, kicks holes in walls and makes spectacles in public places. This is a story of life. Not the type that most would strive to achieve. But the type of life that tests your limits, beats you down and leaves you in a constant state of turmoil. It’s is a story of lessons learned through heartache and chaos. It’s about taking a shit sandwich and turning it into a fully dressed shrimp po-boy. It’s about laughter through tears and strength through forgiveness. It’s about facing unthinkable challenges and tackling our biggest fears no matter how ill prepared we are.

At 75,000 words, Don’t Squeeze the Spaceman’s Taco is a story about autism and what a family does to stay strong.

Kelly Jude Melerine