This one’s definitely recommended for playing along at home. Hugging and eating chocolate do have similarly relaxing results, so yay for that.
In writing terms, this week has been thrillingly exciting.
No, nothing actually happened. This is the writing life we’re talking about.
The high-octane action adventure began as I received an email from Publisher D (my shiny new contact, who just received the beginning of book 2 of my kids’ trilogy). She said she’d received it, and she’d let me know when she’d read it. She also asked where I’d published the first book (having misinterpreted something I’d said).
I wrote back and said the first book was on Publisher B’s slushpile, and had been for nine months. I added that although they were fine with me sending it elsewhere, I valued their comments and chose to wait – and besides, Publisher D had requested and rejected an earlier draft of the first book a few years ago.
She wrote back and said that she could only read the first book in a series, so she wouldn’t read anything until the first book was ready.
I took the permission she’d technically granted, and sent her the beginning of book 1. Zap! Pow!
All this happened in lightning speed during a single afternoon.
So what, kemosabe, does it all mean?
a) I’ve been given permission to resend book 1 to Publisher D (which is, I think, a better book – and of course my own natural choice for first book to reach publication) – and I’ve sent it. I won’t hear a final answer for 6-12 months.
b) Book 2 is now free for a smaller publisher – like Publisher I, who I wanted to send something to after hearing them speak in Melbourne.
c) I have an excuse to not only write to Publisher B (again), but to sound good when I do, since Publisher D did technically request it (which implies they’re the same publisher I pitched to in Brisbane, which is not at all the case since I was horribly rejected in Brisbane).
So! I took my good-sounding excuse and wrote to Publisher B (this time cc-ing the email to my original contact) – precisely one hour ago.
My original contact is on holiday, as her autobot informed me.
My usual contact just replied (yay!) and said that both books are now with independent readers for further evaluation.
This is GREAT news. It is the second-last rung of the ladder (the last rung is the aquisitions meetings). The independent reader will be fresh (a boon for two re-submitted novels), and their job is READING, which means they’ll be a whole lot faster than a publisher or editor (who often only actually have about two hours of reading time a week, since it’s not their main job).
In fact, “Stormhunter” was once “unconditionally recommended” by a freelance reader for Publisher A. My contact there (an editor) was so excited that she emailed me to let me know it was with “the aquisitions editor”. Two weeks later, I had my answer. It was a no, sadly – but the reason it was rejected was because of an unmarketable plotline which I’ve since removed.
So! It’s moved up. Progress! I’m pretty confident freelance readers will like what they see (whether they’re blown away is another matter), and I know my twittertales and blogging and so forth do help at acquisitions meetings (plus I’ve already met at least one of the people who’ll be sitting at that table – which means they know I’m not visibly deranged*).
The down side is that December is coming, and everything slows down then. I reckon I’ll hear back in either November or February/March next year – since it’s two books, next year is more likely. I won’t email again until at least January. Apart from anything else, it’s no longer in the tarry hands of my main Publisher B contact.
I’m too excited to go find a picture at present (also, I need to go to work, STAT!) but I will tell you that the story beginning on October 1 is called “Zeppelin Jack and the Deadly Dueller.” Yep, it’s steampunk time.
Still, here’s a link to a fan-made transformers movie that looked like it had robots in it (I don’t know what the rating is):
*I’ve been to writing conferences and met other writers, and believe me – writers, hobos and serial killers are indistinguishable.