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Saturday, 5 January 2013

Lessons Learned and Looking Forward

I'm going to start by wishing each and every one of you a Happy New Year. I did debate writing this post a few days ago as 2013 chimed in but as I was at a party and a teensy weensy bit tiddled, I forgot all about it.

So much happened for me and so many of my lovely writing buddies during 2012 that it's still hard for me to get my head around it all. Here's an excerpt of my post written on the 1st January 2012:

And so we come to the dreaded New Year's Resolution. I've never been one for making resolutions just because I'm supposed to and this year will be no different. My goals haven't changed. I love, love, love writing and the dream is still to be published by M&B. If the book with them (no, I haven't heard anything but thanks for asking) is ultimately rejected then so be it - I will simply bombard them with the next one. And the next. And the next. And the... you get my drift.

Well the book in questions was rejected (after three rounds of revisions). That same book, now entitled Tempted by Trouble, subsequently sold to Entangled and will be published in March. I also embarked on a new book for M&B, working under the close guidance of my lovely editor there. Finally, on the 19th September, I received The Call. That book, entitled The Rings That Bind, will be published in August. After dreaming and trying and persevering for year and years, 2013 will finally see my name in print. Who knows, maybe book two of my M&B contract will be published this year too... I've got to finish writing it first!

So what have I learnt over the past year? Number one, the year reiterated the need for perseverance. That, to me, is the greatest lesson any wannabe writer can learn. Take the knocks on the chin because you and your writing will come back stronger for them. The second lesson I have learned is that a good editor who is on your side is worth more than all the tea in China. In the past twelve months I have worked under four editors - both my original M&B and Entangled editors moved on to pastures new. Charlotte, my new M&B editor, is a diamond whose patience knows no limits. Keyren, my new Entangled editor, is so on-the-ball it's scary. I have no doubt whatsoever that both Charlotte and Keyren believe in me and my writing, and I adore them both.
On the flip side, an editor who is not on your side can totally destroy your confidence - a writer's relationship with an editor is unique in that you are dependent on them, not just for their guidance in making your book the best it can be, but also to act as your advocate within the publishing house. Because of that dependency, some writers feel they have to swallow behaviour they would never accept from anyone else, either personally or professionally. I would write more about this but I can see it turning into a full-length post on it's own so shall save it for another day!

Before I sign off, I would like to wish Tara Pammi, Victoria Parker, Jennifer Drogell and Jennifer Faye all the best with their debut HMB releases this year. I would also like to wish Aimee Duffy and Lindsay Pryor all the best with their follow-ups - these ladies have a busy year ahead for them! Finally, I wish you all the luck in the world on your own unique journey and hope 2013 brings you much peace, love and happiness.

Take care, xxx