Monday, November 26, 2012
I sold my first book!! It's called Settling the Score and comes out in April 2013. Yep, that's the big news around here. It took me more years than most but the journey was worth it. I met a lot of fascinating people, all of whom have their own story to tell. I asked a few of them if they would share these stories of their own first sales.
First up is Nancy Parra:
When my first book sold I ran the gamut of emotion- joy, accomplishment, pride and then came the most unexpected of emotions - fear. Yes, after ten years of writing and seventeen full manuscripts, when it came to the idea that people would actually READ the book and worse-have opinions-about it, I panicked. It was rather like working out for ten years to have great abs and then suddenly being forced to strip and parade in front of the nation in a bikini… Not the thing for an introvert. What if people didn’t “get” it? I wouldn’t be there to explain. I wouldn’t be able to protect my baby from the dreaded thrown-against-the-wall. What if the readers all thought my heroine was too-stupid-to-live? I wouldn’t be able to defend myself or my baby…
Then came the option book. For the first time in my life I had to write a book an editor expected to publish. What if my “sold” novel was a fluke? How would I explain why my option book was so bad? What if I would end up being a one book wonder? The pressure! How would I ever be able to write again? (Yes, a writer’s brain is full of drama.)
Here my published friends were congratulating me and telling me to enjoy the feeling because nothing feels as great as the “first” book. Meanwhile, I had to remind myself to breathe. I was so terrified I wrote the option book in 6 weeks and sent it in as fast as I could so that when the dismal news came from the editor I would get it over with fast. Yes, I’m the kind that rips the bandage off in one fell swoop. Out of that terror came “A Wanted Man”, my first Booklist starred review book and contracts for five more books.
To this day I am still slightly terrified when someone tells me they have read my books. I brace myself and say, “I hope you liked it.” Thankfully, they usually do.
Nancy now puts her fear and terror into cozy mystery series. “Gluten for Punishment”, Berkley Prime Crime will be out May 7, 2013 and is available for preorder.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Saturday, November 10, 2012
I've been doing it so many years. The NaNoWriMo, I mean. This wild, month long chase of a 50,000 word rough draft novel. I can't even tell you when I started. But this year, this year was going to be different. I swore I wasn't going to participate.
I didn't have a real reason why except I was tired of the challenge, there were other things to do. A NaNo can be real disruptive to the household if it's not managed right and then there is always that feeling you get in your gut if you get behind.
So I was out of it this year. For sure. No way.
I signed up two weeks before the kick off, now so excited about the story that having to wait to start typing until today was a cruel fate. I read No Plot, No Problem - twice. Read Ready, Set, Novel but opted not to use it; and I got my handy dandy NaNo kit with everything inside to keep me going.
And I bought the purse. Um huh, You read that right. Every year I buy a purse that I really like and I have it shipped to me. Then I sit the box where I can see it from my work station. If I pass the 50,000 word mark on time, I get to keep the purse. If not, I have to give it away.
In my opinion the NaNo is a lot like this. It's a month long game with yourself to see how far you can push to get the words out. Some days they come easy, flowing onto the page like a gift. Other days it's like wrestling live chickens with too much noise and a mess all around. Happily you can find yourself somewhere in the middle. Little treats help. Little surprises. "If I just get five hundred more words done I can have that latte from Starbucks." Add a thousand to that and toss in a scone.
The NaNo is hard. Very hard. But as I have come to learn it's ingrained in my brain. It's fall. The Halloween decorations are up and it's time for me to start typing.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
I can think of many reasons why I love my job. The fact I am a grown up with imaginary friends is just a side benefit. Right now, actually, I have this guy named Davis, really wants to be in his own book. Met him about five or six days ago and man is he demanding and adorable --Seriously Adorable -- I think I am in love after just a few days -- or is that merely a crush? Lust? I don't care what it is, I just want more of Davis.
It's just too bad I have a character and no story for him yet but we do keep talking.
"Honey, who are you talking to?"
"Okay dear, let me know how that goes." (hubby backs away slowly)
The other side benefit of my work? I work alone -- well me with five chinchillas in my office because -- be real -- shouldn't everyone have five chinchillas in their office? Okay, okay, wasn't one of my best plans, but damn they are cute and I think they might love me even with that brain size. I swear they get this look in their eye when they are all lined up on the side of the cage, staring at me all at once with that mixture of creepy and "Mom!!!"
I enjoy the company of "people" like Davis and though he is annoying in his persistence, he really is wonderful. And the above cartoon, which I loved? I don't think I would make in this the kind of job market and if I did, not quite sure where I would end up on the chart. Know I wouldn't be at the bottom and rarely feel clueless, though again, most of the people I am talking to are imaginary and well, you can sorta manipulate that conversation -- unless it's Davis. But to make it to the top? Really? I know people like Davis like to talk -- and I have a hundred Davis' in my head, filed away, but that just makes me a fiction writer and not a sociopath, right? I don't know ... maybe there is some sort of "path" in there somewhere with my job choice!! But I do know I love it!!