Saturday, February 23, 2013

Where Oh Where Does My Story Go? ... The Journey of DYING TO DREAM

Manuscript is finished ... check. Edits, Revisions, More Edits, and Revisions ... check. Final read-through ... check. Now what?

Well, I had two options, both of which I'd taken before. If I chose option A -- query to agents, it will be a much longer road, much longer wait, but if it happened, I could get doors to open that would never be possible without an agent. Or option B -- submit the work to small, independent publishers who don't require an agent. Quicker, less fuss, but not the big payoff. Okay, so I'm not so patient any longer. Go with option B. Besides, I had accumulated a waaaay long list of indies to submit to. It would be a really long time before I'd run out of "doors to knock on".

I started with 4 or 5, one of which responded right away and asked for the full manuscript. Turns out this was to be a big delay in getting Dying to Dream published because this particular pub wants the suspense they accept to be big on romance. The good part is they were willing to work with me to get the story to the point where they'd like it and want to contract.

Two good things happened during this process. One, I did manage to add some romance. And two, I narrowed down the POV's to three, which I hadn't realized is such a very big deal :-). The downside was that there wasn't enough romance, and I wasn't willing to add more, so we parted ways after almost a YEAR! "Sigh"

Back to square one: This time, I submitted to five more pubs (that's a total of about 10 submissions -- really low number for me since the last work I'd written went out to probably about 50!) That was in the first week of August, 2012. Mainly Murder Press replied right away and said they'd get back to me after reading the sample chapters. Two weeks later, they asked for the full (8/22/12). By the end of August they offered me a contract. (WOW! That was fast.) But wait. I'm not through.

While I was taking time to read through the contract and deciding what to do, I received an email around the middle of September from yet another pub I'd queried, offering a contract. By this time, I'm thinking, what is going on and what a gem of a story I must have written! In the meantime, MMP is wanting an answer. I'm researching, even reading some of the books they've published and liking what I see. We go back and forth with me asking questions about certain things in the contract.

I finally make my decision and decide to go with MMP. It's a good fit. But the story doesn't end there. Geesh! A couple of days later, one of the other pubs asks to see the full manuscript. And a couple months later, yet another wanted to offer a contract! That's 3 out of 5 this time around who wanted to contract, and 1 that showed interest. The odds don't get better than that! And the expression, "you snooze, you lose" comes to mind :-) Sorry, you other guys. MMP caught the fish and I hope they are as happy as I am.

Now, of course, I can't help thinking, if I'd known what a great thing this novel of mine was, would I have gone the agent route and caught a bigger fish of my own? Well, I'll never know, and that's not how I'm gonna play this act in my life. No sir. I'm gonna drink the wine and enjoy the ride!

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