Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The road to publication

Back to writing a continuation of what Ivy's question started. I got side tracked with mushy stuff, kid stuff, and goodness-knows-what stuff.

I'm not sure why anyone seems interested in what I've done. Lots of detours along the way, that's for sure. But I'm always asked about this and am going to lunch with a writer and his wife to discuss publishing, specifically Indie publishing.

Soooo anyway, High Tide followed Kathryn's Beach. I really had no clue why Terrie cared one flip whether Joseph came back from Ireland. He is/was a minor character who never really developed and as far as I was (and still am) concerned, he was little more than a stage prop.

From there, Storm Surge came about as a peace offering for what I had done in High Tide. I had most of the draft done when the agent query took over.

I was researching agents while I wrote SS. But the querying process was a full time job. It really is true that you must send exactly what the submissions require. So every letter and sometimes sample had to be tailored to the target.

I should add though, their replies were anything but real. Some had made up generic rejection post cards. Some printed four rejection slips per page and cut them apart. A couple of people wrote on my query letter, "Not for me" and sent it back. The agent I really wanted wrote back a nice letter that she wished she had seen this a couple of years ago. Her health was forcing her to retire. She gave me useful feedback and I will love her forever.

One day three rejection letters came the same day. I had sent the usual SASE with each query as is proper manners. I let the envelops lay on my desk for a week, totally tired of rejection letters. When I finally opened them, there was one from an agent requesting the full manuscript and a six week exclusive. Of course, I didn't pull my other queries that were floating around. I figured I'd deal with that when I had a contract in my hands.

Long story shortened, I liked my agent. He was totally unorganized and eventually I decided it was best to end things between us.

Almost as spite, I POD'd Kathryn's Beach. I was going broke printing mss for everyone. I liked the company I went with, but in the end, there just isn't much money in that if you can figure out a better way to go.

I'm going to leave out the next part of the story because of an agreement not to mention it. We'll just call this part the "black hole."

Tomorrow I'll get into the Indie stuff.

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