Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Publisher That Wanted More: Harem

It seemed like I'd at least made a break through with my Esther novel. A publisher liked my writing, based on the first three chapters. They just couldn't publish a second Esther novel.

So I jumped on this chance and pitched an idea to the publisher. What about a novel about some of King David's wives?

I received a positive reply. "Yes, send it when you finish. Take your time. Projects like these take a very long time."

So for the next year, I researched and wrote the 400-page novel, called Harem. Then I sent it off to the publisher.

She took a year before she rejected it.

And I found myself back at square one.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Queen Esther Novel

I wanted to write a novel about the story of Queen Esther from the Bible. I did quite a bit of research, drafted and polished three chapters, and pitched my novel idea to a publisher at a writing conference. I caught a couple of publishers' interest and they wanted to see the whole thing. So, for the next six months, I busted the novel out and sent it to the publishers

They both rejected it.

Disappointed, but not wanting to give up on my book, I started shopping it around. One national publisher said they liked my writing, but they had recently published a fiction book on Queen Esther. The good news was that the publisher invited me to send more.

My Esther book is still sitting on my shelf. I let family and friends read it. My aunt loved it and wants me to make copies to share with some of her friends. I thought I'd clean it up and send it to her as an ebook. But then I read the first chapter and I see so many glaring errors that I don't even want to put my name on it! Guess it was a good thing that it didn't ever hit bookstore shelves.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

No Stranger to Rejection

During my college days, I wrote several short stories. Once I graduated, was married and working fulltime in a marketing department, I pulled those short stories back out, polished them up and even wrote a couple more. The I started shopping them around.

I lost count of how many places I sent them. I filled two or three printed sheets of an excel spreadsheet of where I kept track of it all. One by one, I recieved form letter after form letter of rejections.  "Thank you for thinking of us, but . . .," "not right for us . . .," "does not fill our needs at this time . . .," etc.

I did get an occasional "encouraging" rejection: a rejection with personal comment. Even though it was a "no," the editor had still taken the time to hand write a note or make some personal comment.

For years, that was all I had to hang on to, encouraging rejections.

I kept writing.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Roller Coaster

My agent contacted me earlier this week: one publisher rejected my book already. That was pretty fast. Never a good sign. You have to wonder, did they get that bored after only the first paragraph or what? This was discouraging. But I'm not a stranger to rejection. In this business, you get a hundred times more rejection than you do acceptance. So I have developed a thick skin to it. However, it penetrates my wall a bit when I'm closer than I've ever been before only to get yet another . . . NO.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Shopping My Book Around!

Two developments on the writing front during the last couple weeks:
1. My short story, "In Our Own Backyard" came put in the third volume of Garbanzo Literary Journal.

I have to say that working with the editors of this magazine has been a lot of fun. The magazine is created by hand and is really unique. I'm proud to be a part of the Garbanzo community!

2. My agent has sent my novel out to two publishers, so now I'm crossing my fingers and hoping hard! My agent says that it will probably be a few months before we hear one way or another.