Saturday, October 22, 2011
Once Upon a Time or How I Got an International Publishing Contract
Unfortunately, my life wasn't a fairy tale. I wrote and I wrote and I wrote. I queried and queried and queried. Rejection, rejection, rejection.
But then an amazing thing happened. My friend, Karly Kirkpatrick, turned out to be my fairy hotchickwriter (because if I call her a godmother she will probably rip me in two). She told me about this thing called epublishing and then sprinkled fairy dust on me. It worked. I was hooked! Then, with GP Ching another rockin' author from SCBWI-IL, we formed DarkSide Publishing! The we brought on Angela Carlie and Magan Vernon! Could life get any better?
Yet, to be honest with you, I still felt like I lacked validation. Did I need it? No. But it's nice to get it.
Then one day, I got a message from some random dude named Mark Williams. He told me how much he loved Anathema and asked if I would write a guest post for his blog. It turns out he was half of the outrageously popular Saffina Desforges writing team. They are bestsellers in the UK with their debut novel, Sugar & Spice.
A month or so later, I happened to see this post. Go ahead and read it. I had a Sally Field moment: "He likes me, he really likes me!" It was a little embarrassing. Luckily nobody saw it but me. I felt like I finally had some validation and it felt good - I won't lie. I emailed Mark and asked him why he didn't tell me about this before the big announcement. He reminded me of what I'd told him a few months ago, about how his praise meant a lot because he had nothing to gain from it. Mark was afraid I would think he was trying to get a piece of my publishing pie.
I laughed. Really hard. Seriously, how could anyone take this as anything other than a compliment? Not only did a HUGE UK bestselling writer love Anathema, but he took inspiration from it to start a new epublishing business. Um, wow! (He's probably already made a bajillion more dollars, pounds, whatevs, than me anyway...as if Anathema could help him...I'm the one with something to gain here because in the last six months I think I've sold ten books in the UK.)
So, I think you can guess my big news. I've signed on with his new company MWiDP to have my ebook published and promoted in the UK, Germany, and France. I haven't been this excited about publishing or my future in it for a long time. So, thank you to Mark and his partner Saffina Desforges. You guys have made my year. I hope this partnership will be long and fruitful! What I doubly love about this arrangement is that it's so non-traditional. One of the best parts of epublishing has been blazing new paths with like-minded writers. A year ago, I wouldn't have believed any of this was going to happen.
Mark has all of these amazing ideas about my books and has been a great sounding board. He really listens to my feelings about Anathema and how I think it should be represented. Then he'll surprise me with ideas of his own - and, seriously, he has some awesome thoughts for how the Cloud Prophet Trilogy will be marketed.
One odd thing about Mark, though. I've never seen a picture of him. He lives this really mysterious life in Africa (he's told me tons about it ... so cool). I want to add him to my collage of British guys I adore, but I don't have a picture to steal a face from. So.....I did my best. ;)