Monday, November 28, 2011


Back in the 1990s, I finally received "that call" from a publisher in NYC telling me they wanted to buy my book. I'd only been at it for ten years, but to be fair, the first few I had no idea I'd ever actually submit something to a publisher. I was content with newspaper and magazine articles while I wrote long novels that didn't belong much of anywhere.
After settling down to a genre that actually surprised me more than it did anyone else, I began to pitch western historical romances. Secret admission: I'd never read a romance at that point. It's just that a western with a woman protagonist wouldn't sell, but if I turned it into a romance, an editor told me, they'd be interested. And so they were. I did enjoy writing westerns. They signed me to two two-book contracts before the bottom fell out of the mid-list. We writers refer to it as the mid-list crisis. It was actually the signal that all was no well with big publishing. I managed two more with another publisher before the end.
We've seen that tower crumble ever since, as most of us turn to Indie Publishers. Then along came Kindle and some of us who'd been wise enough to convert our rights to earlier books began back list publication.
Before that happened, however, I submitted three books to Indie publishers, all three of which are E book publishers who also publish a print book under certain restrictions.
Now I've learned, in an entirely different way than in the 1990s, that two of those books have been accepted and the third made it to top consideration for publication in 2012.
Am I any the less excited? No, and double No. I had almost given up continuing publication of my books when notification came, first from The Wild Rose Press, a book I had pitched at a conference and back to my first love, western historical romance STONE HEART'S WOMAN due out Feb. 2012; then from SynergE Books for a book the editors at TWRP suggested I submit to a paranormal mainstream since it didn't really qualify for a romance, WOLF SONG due out Dec. 2011; and finally a really crazy story about demons and possession, A SAVAGE GRACE is being considered by Oak Tree Press for next year. I wrote it long before the current craze for this type of story.
What I'm getting at here is a message to all writers toiling in the back rooms of homes all over this land. Do not give up when things look bleak. Keep writing. Turn out what's in your heart and soul and mind. Listen to the voices and write and don't stop because you don't think you'll ever sell.
During that dry time I produced some non fiction books, which did pretty good and wrote three more novels which I'm planning on uploading to Kindle after the first of the year.
You won't be published unless you have a body of work. Don't pin all your hopes on one or two books. Keep writing and hoping; keep creating and listen to those voices. I can't say that often enough.
I'll let you get back to writing now. Do it. Unless you'd rather ... nah, you don't want to give up. Not if you're a real writer.


Eunice Boeve said...

Good advice. Writing is not for the faint of heart. I will keep writing no matter what the market does, for I can no more give it up than I can stop breathing. Well, maybe that's a bit dramatic, but you know what I mean. :-)

Velda Brotherton said...

Appreciate the comment, Eunie. I certainly do know what you mean. Have a great week.