Saturday, March 24, 2012

Speed of things

Back in the day, I used to be fast. Not set records fast, but get a few medals and get your name in the paper fast. The years past. The pounds came on. I still have one speed that it is above a walk that I use when I go to the track, but slow is that only way to describe it.
Such a slowdown is not the same for the publishing industry. After I wrote Summers At Blue Lake, it took me two years to find an agent. It took my agent two years to find a publisher. It took the publisher two years to publish the book. Writing novels is not for the sprinter. I often thought that I'd be so much better at rejection if I were a song writer. But who wants rejection in a process that is so long and so time-consuming. (And that isn't even counting the time it takes to write the thing.) Fear of rejection has frozen my pen. I just don't have the heart to go to the page even though the ideas still do mad laps around my brain. You would think they would have tired themselves out by now.
Two weeks ago, I received a letter from my agent's assistant. My book rights have reverted back to me from the publisher, and she wanted to know if I was interested in pursuing ebook publication. Well, the book was already written; I might as well capitalize on it. I called her that day, and she asked me to write a few bullets of an e-marketing plan to submit with a pitch to one of the big ebook companies. I spent a frenzied weekend researching e-marketing for e-books. I turned in my plan for which I got kudos and was told that I would need a new cover if this went through. (My publisher held the rights to the old cover.) Being an artist and a perfectionist, I thought I could try my hand and doing my own cover. Off to do more research. That process was fast and fun. I learned a lot in the 22 revisions that I did for the final product. That process probably took me a week. And in that time, I had an answer: Nook accepted my ebook for their Nook First program.
Beginning May 28, my ebook will be featured on Nook's main page. It will run exclusively for a month on Nook before becoming available in other markets. My head is spinning. I must go back to the Internet to research how to execute the points I outlined in my marketing plan. It is thrilling to say the least.
Now that I have this outlet that moves at the speed of light, I see hope again for my work. I want to write. I have stories to tell. I want to arrange words in a way that only I can.
I work as a substitute teacher. It is seasonal work that begins to dry up toward the end of a school year. Very soon, I will have time to work.

Writer, take your mark.
Get set.

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