Hello! Welcome to my blog. I’m just learning all this so please be patient with me. This is the story about my path to publication. I invite you to leave comments if you wish.
I finished writing my first novel of romance, Love on the Rocks, in March, 2009. Four weeks later I had it tweaked and polished to the best of my ability, and began the submission process. All told, I wrote four novels and a novella in 2009. I also started two other novels and wrote a selection of shorts to enter for challenges and so on.
Rave reviews were received on a regular basis as friends, family and acquaintances read my work, but I could not garner the attention of an editor.
In November, 2009, I joined my first NaNoWriMo, easily producing and editing (although I wasn’t supposed to, as I found out later) 100684 words on three separate novels during that one month. I loved being immersed in my characters, having the words flow freely and enjoying the sense of accomplishment. Yes! I was finally living my dream of writing full-time.
One of the novels I wrote in November was Zakia & the Cowboy, a romantic suspense…the first in my Thunder Creek Ranch series. I think of it as my best work to date and was really proud of it…until I received a form R for my efforts. Still I thought it needed a home so I entered it in a couple of contests. Nada! Zip! Nothing!
Putting on a pity party is not my style and so it was that I started researching epublishers. I sent 8 submissions in 3 days, Feb 25th, 26th and 27th.
Here it is, March, 2010, almost a full year after I wrote my first romance and I realized all the form R’s I’d received had not prepared me for the angst I’d suffer when an editor actually took an interest in one of my manuscripts.
My first two requests were for full manuscripts and came in on February 28th, 2010. That’s right…after ten months of submitting manuscripts and receiving rejections my first request was followed almost immediately by a second. Then today, I got a request for a partial from another editor.
Now, I have no idea if any of these will lead to a sale but I’m keeping my fingers crossed. In the meantime, butterflies have taken wing in my belly and sleep is difficult to come by. Concentration has taken a back seat to checking my emails and worrying if my writing is clear enough. Is my voice one they’ll enjoy? Are my characters/conflict strong enough? Too strong?
The writing life is certainly a tough one and a continual learning experience. In December a bunch of us were rejected in the Presents contest and formed critique and networking groups to commiserate and keep in touch. We are now firm friends who praise, encourage and critique each other’s work. I’ve learned so much this past year from other authors, published and non-published, as well as workshops on eHarlequin and by writing almost non-stop.
I don’t know if any of this has helped anyone, but it feels good to be sharing with you. Please share your comments and experiences to date so we can learn from each other.
Until next time, happy writing. Lorraine
Edited to add:
Perseverance pays off!
Subbed Zakia & the Cowboy to Evernight Publishing on June 17th, 2011. Their response came the following afternoon. Yes! They wanted it. Contract negotiated, signed and sent on the 20th. In October of this year, I will be a published author and you know, it feels great!