Monday, December 3, 2012

What goes into writing a book - My story

Five years ago, I was sitting on my kitchen floor reading the Twilight series and I thought to myself, I can do this. Write that is, not fall in love with a sparkly vampire.  I have always written, since I was little. Whether it was adaptations of fairy tales or in a notebook that I passed between friends in high school, I was always writing.

So I sat down to write this amazing novel I had come up with, in my head it was the greatest thing since diet coke was invented.  I wrote like it was going out of style, chapters and chapters each day.  What did I come up with? Well, I will admit, it had a lot of Twilight in it, even if it had nothing to do with vampires or werewolves. 
I scratched it, and rewrote and reworked and slaved over it.  It took me five months to write the first draft, two years to edit it down to anything I would show anyone, and another year before I was serious about it.

By this time, I had this great book that I wanted the world to see. It was going to be the next amazing book, it was going to take off and every publisher was going to fall in love with it and want to represent it.  Boy was I wrong. I started researching how to get my book from my computer to the bookshelves of all the great bookstores.  I was very na├»ve, thinking it was easy, you just write a publisher and they take it and make it great, because afterall, this was a great work of writing, not a flop, they had to love it, right?

Wrong, very, very wrong.

There were literary agents, small publishers, large publishers, self publishing…. There was so much I had no clue what it even all meant. So I started with a simple query letter and my first ten pages and submitted to a bunch of literary agencies, thinking it was going to be a piece of cake, they surely had to pick me up.
Then my first rejection letter came, and a second, by the twentieth, I was pretty down and out.
So I started over. Going back through my manuscript and editing, tweaking, making it better.
Then I resubmitted to a bunch of literary agents again. This had to be my time.

Again, the parade of rejections came flooding in, but with them, one partial request.  Someone wanted to read more, and that was what I needed to light the spark in me.  Shortly after, another partial.  I was on  cloud nine! Something had to come from these! If they liked it enough for a partial, they were going to love the whole thing, right?  Wrong.

Both turned into rejections, but one of them, came from a woman I had become friends with, and that hurt the most. But she sent me a lovely little email, one that when I get down I go back and read. She told me not to give up, that I would make something of this hodge podge of a manuscript, it just needed another revamp.
So I did, I took a long time and went through it, revamping where she said to, and fixing, deleting, reworking the whole thing.

Then I sent it to an editor, who chopped it down again, another woman who became a friend. Both women amazing authors who helped guide me to where I am now.

So, now  I had this beautiful work, all glittery and cleaned up.  And I was sick of rejections, so I looked into self publishing, and by my 30th birthday, my goal was to have it out in ebook print.

I did it.

But I also kept looking for a publisher that would take me on, that would love my series as much as I did.  I kept my hope alive.

I am still looking for one. And I won’t give up, not yet.

My dream publisher opened its doors for submissions on Saturday, I had submitted to them while they were closed for submissions and was turned away, but I am persistent, and I love this company to death. It would be the biggest honor to be published under them, so I am trying again.

Keep your fingers crossed and send good vibes, pray, whatever it is you do! 

If you are a writer, don’t give up, but know the hard work you are going to have to put in once you have your manuscript written. Never take a rejection to heart; there are a lot of people out there that love to write just as much as you do.  Just revamp and rework and get back on the metaphorical horse.

If you are a reader, help out all authors, self published or company published.  Don’t pirate books.  All authors put in a lot of time into their work, would you do your job for free?

Now I must return to the chaos that is my house. Until next time…


  1. Great post, M. And let me just add my voice to yours cuz I truly agree, DO NOT GIVE UP... Walt Disney went bankrupt, like, three times before it turned a corner for him and now look, WHEN you get picked up, you're gonna go celebrate at Disney World, bet you dollars to donuts ;)

  2. Go M! Your perseverance is awesome. You can do it! Someday I'm going to see Neophyte at Barnes and Noble and I'll grab my friend and go, "I know her!!" :D

  3. Best of luck! I'd cross my fingers and toes, but then I couldn't do much. So I'll just send good wishes your way. Judith

  4. Thanks everyone! Hopefully I will know next week one way or another, even if it's a "We want to see more", which is always better then a no.

    I will keep you posted!

  5. I know it's probly early, but heard anything yet? Still crossing my fingers :)

  6. Not yet. But I should hear back this week.