Monday, August 24, 2015
Officially out September 4th!!
I am so happy for this book to come out! This is my Momma's book! The first one I let her read! Mom loved this book so much! I love this book so much!
I wrote this book after a fantastic camping trip with friends. The idea started the minute we got there, and grew and grew. I had a whole notebook of notes by the time we left, and still had time to have so much fun. It came together in a month - the first month after all of Those Kids were in school full time and I could concentrate on writing without interruptions. (Yes, it was a while ago, but trust me, it's been edited a lot)
Some time later, Mom and Dad had stopped by our house one evening. We weren't really doing anything, just hanging out - watching a movie or something, I don't remember exactly. Mom and Dad had been out to dinner and saw our front door open as they passed by. They circled the block and came back to stop in. We were happy to see them.
We broke out some adult beverages. Had a blast talking about all kinds of stuff. They had just gotten a new laptop and were confused about stuff. We had them bring it in, hooked it up to our wireless, and downloaded all of the things they needed. (they couldn't get wireless at their house at that time, though they lived just a few miles from us.. and yeah, it was a few years ago...maybe more than a few... (When they got a new laptop, mom transferred the file onto the new one because she would read it every few months)
So...Mom and I's conversation turned to writing. She always asked me what I was working on and what was happening. She was always excited about this story. I had brainstormed it a bit with her. I had already submitted it a bunch of times and no one was interested. I decided to let her read it... I downloaded it onto their new computer for her, after she'd read several chapters on my computer.
Mom loved this story... even in it's unedited state. She'd call me to tell me she found an error, but that it was minor to the fact that she couldn't stop reading. She defended this story to the end. Every time I'd get a rejection on this, she was mad for me. Even when I signed contracts for my other books, she'd ask about this one... wondering when someone would take a chance on it. At last count, this had over 110 rejections.
After Dad passed, I was floundering a lot with writing. As we sat with him in the hospital, I was working on a Halloween short for my other publisher. After submitting it and discussing with my editor, we agreed it wasn't really something that would fit with the Halloween line, and that there were a few plot holes that needed to be addressed, and how it would really be better as a full novel. I wasn't sure it would, so we backburnered it... and I continued to feel lost and without spark.
We do a publishers showcase in my writers group every year and my awesome editor from Soul Mate was part of it. I really liked what she had to say and I loved that they accept many different genres. I thought maybe it was time to dust this book off again and give it another shot. So, I submitted and within a few weeks had a request for a full. I didn't tell Mom. I didn't want to have to disappoint her again.
About a month after I submitted, I was spending the weekend at Mom's. She had bought this awesome desk and needed someone to put it together for her and needed the company. She was in a lot of pain due to a sciatic nerve problem and needed help getting certain things done. I had conflicting feelings about going, only because some of my writer friends were having a mini retreat and I wanted to go, but I couldn't leave Mom in the lurch. I was so glad I went.
I got there and went to work on the desk (only had to take it apart 3 times to fix something)... We ordered food, and after we ate, I took a break to check email. That's when I got the contract offer. I had walked outside to check out the sky and after pacing and calling That Man, I went inside.
Her face when I told her is something I will never forget. I knew right then that I was supposed to be with Mom when I got this news. She was so ecstatic. She clapped, stomped her feet, and nearly cried. It was an epic moment. She wasn't too happy when I said she could only tell her best friend until the contract was signed, but not a real unhappy - just an impatient unhappy. (I had to text her once the contract was signed so she could tell her other friends.) :)
So, fast forward to May. The day Mom started feeling bad was the day I got my first cover shot. The title was incorrect, but the basic cover is the same. I was so excited to show her, but she was sick and in pain. We got her to the hospital and they pumped her full of morphine. By the time they were nearly ready to take her to surgery, her pain level was low enough that I asked her if she wanted to see. She couldn't really talk thanks to the tubes and dry mouth, but she grabbed my hand and squeezed when she saw it. I'm so glad I got to share that with her.
And now I'm a week away from release day! I very much miss my momma and I will miss sharing this with her, but I know she's still here with me for it - just in a different way.
That's my story...