Tuesday, July 12, 2011

July 9, 2011 - First Book Cover Complete!

The first cover is complete!! Illustrator Jeffrey Duckworth (http://www.duckofalltrades.com/) did a fantastic job on the cover for Vinny Vain Liked to Complain. The first cover completed for my series, titled: Little Life Lessons; Love, Grace & Blessings - Stories For All God's Children.

The Vinny Vain book is available for purchase on Amazon.com, the link is below.

Next cover he is working on is Nitti Gritty Smitty...can't wait to see what Jeff comes up with! Nitti Gritty Smitty is also available for purchase in the Amazon store (for Kindle), no hard copies yet. The link is below.

June 30, 2011 - My UK Connection!

Someone actually bought one of my books in the UK!!!! WOW
Ok, I know 1 book is nothing, but still. I will celebrate that ONE book being sold in the UK. I kinda wonder now who bought the book? Did they like it?
I guess I will never know those answers, but it's nice to think that maybe, just maybe they really really loved it and in their mind gave it 5 stars and really wanted to leave a review, but simply didn't have time to leave a fabulous review.

Or the opposite could be true, they could have hated it and thankfully didn't bother leaving a review.

I'm hoping for the former rather than the later.

For my first month of sales, I did sell 14 books. Not too bad in a 10 day time frame. I'll take that and thank the Lord every day!!!  :-)

Correction: I sold 15 books (14 in the U.S. and that ONE book in the U.K.)  :-))

June 20, 2011 ~ Publishing Time!

Here goes nothing...Published 4 of my books on Amazon's Kindle. Not a lot of people are aware yet, not even family and friends know I have written anything, let alone children's books...I guess I will have to start informing people!
So the venture begins into the book world!

Here are the Titles:
(1) Nitti Gritti Smitty, available now on Amazon.com (Kindle books)

(2) Vinny Vain Liked to Complain, available now on Amazon.com (Kindle books)

(3) Mr. Pitt & Lickety's Split, available now on Amazon.com (Kindle books)

(4) My Forgivefullness, available now on Amazon.com (Kindle books)

I have completed two other books, but I have not published them yet. I am also in the process of completing two more books.

Year 2011

It is now 2011 and I have caught you up to where I am at in the present day of things. I decided to self publish instead of taking the "traditional" publishing route. More control, more royalties! Of course I may change my mind about my decision later, but for right now I feel I am moving in the right direction.

Side note: I did attempt to obtain an agent, but after sending my manuscript to one particular agency in New York and NEVER hearing from them. I decided, the heck with that!!!!  An author spends so much time developing their manuscript...writing, re-writing, editing, more editing. Then spending a GREAT deal of time putting together a synopsis, query letters, etc etc, and to NOT hear anything from the agency you spent so much time in researching and reviewing and getting to know them (of course not personally but after you have spent so much time researching their company, you feel like you know them personally!!). I was not only frustrated, but incredibly ANNOYED at their lack of response--even a "BUZZ" off would have been something better than nothing. At least some acknowledgment would mean that they at least received the material, may not have looked at it, but at least they received it. However, when you don't hear ANYTHING from ANYBODY, that pretty much tells you what???


WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! All that time and effort and nothing...

I have received rejection letters before and even experienced the "No response means NO" policy. So why did this particular agencies response (or LACK THEREOF) annoy me so much? Because nowhere in their submission policy did they mention they were utilizing the "No response means No" method. In fact, there policy specifically stated that if an author didn't hear from them within 2 weeks, to send an inquiring email to XXXXX.  Which I did, but no response! SIGH. I don't mind the "no response means no" policy, as long as it is clearly stated in the agency policy.

So, I decided that route was NOT for me. I wasn't going to waste any more time on people that weren't interested in me or my material. So I decided to self-publish!

Year 2009

The year is now 2009 and the Holy Spirit had been nudging me to complete what I had begun back in 2007.

It took me awhile to get back into writing because I really lacked motivation, I think the "enemy" was trying to steal my joy and God's blessings over me. However, I eventually did (with the Holy Spirit's nudging) and in the fall of 2009, I had 3 more stories completed (Nitti Gritti Smitty, Mr. Pitt & Lickety's Split, and Vinny Vain Liked to Complain). The completion of the 3 additional stories completed the entire series, which would later be named the Little Life Lessons; Love, Grace and Blessings - Short Stories For All God's Children series! The date was November 2, 2009.

Side note: On October 9, 2009, the Holy Spirit spoke words to me and gave me a prophesy about the books. I will not write what that prophesy is at this particular time, but I do hold it near and dear to my heart. The prophesy, coupled with the Lord's grace and strength, is what keeps me motivated and moving forward!

The Beginning of the Journey ~ circa 2007

OK so I'm starting this blog "thing" to chronicle my experience into the publishing world. Many words to describe the publishing world...but I'll keep it clean. I CAN say that I am having a lot of fun thus far! Of course there are many frustrating moments, but it really is worth it in the end when you see your book begin to come to life.

So to recap (or catch everyone up), let me go back to THE BEGINNING of how this all started (me writing books and all). It was July/2007 and I was one month out of closing my law practice. For nearly 10 years I was in the legal world...Arguing - Examining and Cross Examining witnesses - Arguing - Power lunches - Power deals...you get the picture. But now I found myself at home. The first month as a quasi stay-at-home mom, cooking, cleaning, picking up kids from carpool...and quite BORED to death. I had been so busy for nearly 10 years, now I just found myself in a big house, alone, bored, and on the verge of an anxiety attack because I didn't know what to do with myself.
I remember sitting at my computer one night and staring at it blankly (awww my computer, what once had been so busy and filled with Briefs, Appeal docs and letters, now flashed pics with words of the latest celebrity gossip, and new and interesting ways to cook a chicken). I checked my email for the 100th time that day and saw that I had a new email from a friend regarding book publishing.

I thought to myself "Huh" wouldn't it be interesting to publish a children's book...a Christian children's book. Since the world at that time, and actually still is, obsessed with "dark" themed stories, I wanted to publish something more positive to feed into our children.

I remember asking and praying to the Lord that if He would just give me some words...stories...I would write them down and go from there...
Well that night I couldn't even sleep. My head was FILLED with so many words and stories!!! I had to get up and write down what was filled in my head. I honestly couldn't write everything down fast enough!! Within a few weeks from when I prayed for stories, I had a total of 3 stories completed (Frog on a Log, The Beetle & the Sun~ which would later turn into Baby Beetle & the Sun, and Hello Lord ~ which would later turn into My Forgivefullness). I also had many more stories in my head that needed to be put on paper.

I sent the completed stories to several publishers. Received many rejection letters, HOWEVER I did receive a contract on one of my stories (My Forgivefullness)...a 21 page contract for a two-book deal! I was excited at first, but after reading the 21 pages, and discovering many unfavorable commitments, I decided not to accept the publication deal. There's actually more to the story, but that's all I'll elaborate on for the time being...

After that, I decided to step back and breathe a bit, everything was happening so fast. It had only been a few months since I even started writing!! Thereafter I put away all of my manuscripts and ideas, and did not look at them or think about them again for another 2 years...that year would be 2009.