|See you later, gators!|
It’s pretty exciting, actually. Here’s the journey so far:
A couple of months ago, Stacy, my fab editor at Entangled Publishing came up with an idea that–while waiting on the second round of ABBY ROAD edits (coming to a bookstore near you in March 2013) that I should submit a story to the new ebook category-romance line that she was going be heading.
It’s called BLISS and it’s all about sweet romances. She said the stories that she was looking for were very similar in voice in my contemporary romance novel, ABBY ROAD. She sent me a list of cat-rom tropes to see if anything sounded fun to write about. Oh, you don’t know what a “trope” is? Neither did I. So, first I had to learn about those, and then came the research: I read my first cat-rom. I was a little confused at first, because what I read was really not the kind of thing that I write. But the more I read, and the more I translated in my writerly brain what I DO write with what my editor had in mind for the new BLISS sweet line, things started to make sense. And one night I came up with a story idea.
The next day, I scribbled out a few paragraphs of what I had in mind and shot it to editor Stacy. She said I was on the right track but she offered some suggestions and let me in on the rules of cat-rom. Oh, there are rules? You bet. And they’re unwavering. Who knew? Oh, the things I’m learning! So, I did some reworking then started in on the actual manuscript, banging out the first 3 chapters. I send those extremely rough pages to a very trusted readers (hollah, sister!) and she liked what she read. So I prettied them up a bit and sent them off to Stacy. She was very excited about my submission, gave me some more cat-rom rules (really? more rules??), asked that I polish up those 3 chapters, write a 1-2 page synopsis and then shoot the whole lot back to her so she could submit it to the “new acquisitions” editor at Entangled.
Wow! Really? That was easy, right?
Not so fast.
If you’re not familiar with a synopsis, it’s the high-level telling of the story from beginning to end in just a few pages; sometimes only 1. First of all, as any other long-winded novelist will tell you, synopses is the bane of our existences. Second, writing a synopsis of a book I haven’t even written yet? Yeah, that’s a problem. Nonetheless, it took me 2 days, but I did it, and I joked with my critique partner–when we both thought the synopsis ran a little long–that 24 hours before, I didn’t even have a story. And now I have a too-long synopsis! Hooray!
After making sure everything was as perfect as could be, I sent off the official submission to Stacy. The next day she told me she loved it and was subbing it to go under contract.
A few days went by….no word. And I was sweating.
Then one night, while I was out to dinner with a big group from work, I got the email. My cat-rom was going to be picked up. AND, editor wanted a blurb about the NEXT book. (SIDE NOTE: cat-roms usually come in sets: 1 book with 2 or 3 (sometimes more!) spin-offs.) So, after celebrating with my work team, I dashed home and made up a couple of paragraphs about my next story. Remember, I’d still yet to write more that a few chapters of the FIRST story!
The next day, I got the exciting news: My new contract would be a multi-book deal! Woo-hoo!
But, hold on. Stacy wants book 1 of the series to come out in October.
“But…” I said, “my first book, ABBY, isn’t slanted until March! So…how can that be?”
Some more things I’ve learned: ebooks come out much, MUCH faster than traditional paperbacks. So, actually, I will probably have 2 ebooks out before the grand release of ABBY. Which is great, right? Super exciting!
In order to keep to this timeline, however, Stacy and I set a very ambitious due date for my first draft. We’re talking weeks, less than a month. At first I freaked out a little. Okay, a lot. It took me years to get ABBY polished and perfect. And my other complete novels took months and months to even get on paper.
But then I calmed down, ate a cupcake and considered. Some of you may remember when I participated in NaNoWriMo back in November ’11. If I could write a brand new, 50K-word story back then, surely I can do it again. Of course I can!
So, if you’ve been wondering, that’s where I’ve been. I’ve been writing. And I will be writing for the foreseeable future. My personal reading, TV, movies, this lovely blog….all of that is going to have to move to the back burner.
Best email from Stacy: “You’re going to be very busy in 2013.”
My reply: “Bring it on!”