On October 26 it will be exactly one year since I received my first offer of contract for a book. Something I NEVER thought would happen. Back in 2009, after the birth of my second son, I finally decided to give writing a shot. This obviously is after years upon years of knowing I WANTED to be a writer, but had no clue how to go about it. I met up with two of my favorite authors at a booksigning and they totally inspired me. That night I went home and started to write. I thought it would be a masterpiece. I finished it, sent it to publishers and the rejections piled in. Okay, no biggie. I wrote another book. This one will definitely get me published. Even more rejections piled in. I started another, but life got in the way and I gave up for a while.
A year later, I became antsy again, the characters are always in my head and I needed relief. I wrote Tempting Mr. Parker. I was so in love with this book and thought. This is REALLY it. I sent the first three chapters to a publisher, the next day they asked to read the entire story. I was jumping out of my damn skin. Two weeks later came the big rejection. In essence Cade was a total ass that no one could ever like him and I was headhopping like none other. I had no idea what the hell headhopping even was!!!! Thankfully the editor that rejected me led me in the right direction and suggested a re-write. I contemplated it, decided it was too much work. So I put that story away.
Then I sat down after figuring out what headhopping was (jumping from one POV to another without scene or chapter breaks) I decided okay, let me try something different. I sat down and in two weeks I wrote The Vampire’s Pet. I was very determined, lol. I sent it out and what else, the rejections came piling in. That is, until one day I opened up my inbox, fully expecting to see another rejection. I saw an email from Changeling Press, then like 4 others from them. My eyes scanned it. That was strange, why would they send me more than one notice? I opened it up, and Yippeee. It was an offer of publication. The publisher read The Vampire’s Pet and loved it. I started screaming and ran to call my husband at work! Needless to say, after that I began my edits on TVP and used so much of the knowledge to fix up Tempting Mr. Parker. I loved the story of Cade and Shakara so much, but I thought it was a lost cause, unable to be fixed. I wanted to trash it and was about to do so until my husband convinced me to keep at it. And so I did and sent it off to publishers. Evernight gave me an offer right away and I’m so thankful accepted. Moral. Keep at it, if you’re an aspiring author. Do. Not. Ever. Give. Up.
And now I’ll share some things I’ve learned since my first book became published:
1. My writing inspires passionate hate filled reviews from some people on Amazon and Goodreads and others WILL take their grievances against you over there by writing bad reviews. (Hahaha. Comes with the territory…keep it moving.)
2. I am continually astounded, humbled and thoroughly delighted with my readers. When I started this journey, I truly had NO IDEA so many people would like my stories and my style of writing.
3. Writing becomes an obsession. I enjoyed writing before I became published, but now it’s almost like a drug. I have to write, if I don’t I feel antsy, lazy and on the verge of going insane because of the multiple stories going on inside my head simultaneously. (And on that note, I’m not crazy.)
4. Writers are so damn supportive of each other…for the most part. I’ve made a small circle of author friends who’s opinions have been invaluable and have gotten me through some rough points. You all know you are.
5.Writing books is not the gateway to making lots of money. Very few authors make enough to live on and have writing as a full time career. (My ultimate goal)
6. Promoting a book takes up WAY too much time.
7. Because one book sells well, does not mean that another will. Because readers liked one book, does not mean they will love the next. Writing and thinking your name will pull it off, is such a sign of disrespect to readers. Even if the muse is acting like a bitch, at least put some effort into it. Readers aren’t dumb.
8. E-piracy sucks and prevents many authors from being able to write because they get no return on their work. Yes, we love writing, but we like to eat too.
I deleted things I learned 9 and 10, because like I stated before Karma will show up sooner or later.
What a year (or almost year right?)