Over a year ago the woman who was editing my Dark InSpectre series asked me to write a hard boiled detective novel for her indy publishing company. I was, of course, immensely flattered. And then I went and did it, mostly over the course of a single summer during which I worked my ass off, taking advantage of my older boy being away at camp and my wife being incredibly understanding and supportive. But then, just before I finished, my presumptive publisher's company closed. Shut down, out of biz, kaput.
She assured me that she would be back, some time, but for the foreseeable future, I was on my own. Good luck ta ya! So then I had this thing, this manuscript, that I had labored over with the expectation of being published. So now what? Well, I did what anybody with a finished manuscript in their hot little hands would do. I started subbing it around. And I mean around. To agents, publishing houses, everywhere and anywhere I thought appropriate. I got more rejections than I could shake a stick at, and we're talking a mondo big stick! The worst were the non-replies. Yeah, some people just never get back to you at all.
But that's okay, I can take a hint. I just kept plugging away, fighting off the bouts of frustration and depression, kept myself busy writing the Dark InSpectre and other stuff. Until I finally found a few indy pulp publishers that seemed right up my alley. One of them had even published a couple of my stories. So I just asked if they were taking submissions. The one I'm most familiar with said, "well, probably not, but send me a query." I still haven't heard back from him.
And this other one said "we're about to close our submissions, but since we haven't quite yet, sure, go ahead and send it to us and we'll put it through our review process." You know what? That's the place that replied to me yesterday saying that my novel, and I quote: "is a title we would like to tentatively accept and assign to an editor to make ready for publication."
Boom! Manuscript accepted! The publisher said it will come out sometime in 2013. My novel. Fucking A Right! The publishing house is a place called Pro Se Press They do a lot of really cool pulp adventure stuff, and it seems like a perfect fit. Cannot tell you the relief and joy I feel. I'm totally looking forward to working with the editor, helping choose cover art, etc. The publisher said that once an editor is on boad, he'll send me the contract, which you can bet I'll sign since this is a reputable place.
And believe me, there were times when I considered going with a not-reputable place, cuz there are several out there that will publish pretty much anything. But something in me just wouldn't give up. So props to whatever the hell that was. Self respect? Desire? Conviction? Plain old stubbornness? E, all of the above?
So I'm gonna have a novel published. No more conversations with my parents in which they mention every single person alive or dead that they know who wrote a book, read a book, or heard of books. "Maybe you can talk to him....?" Cuz, you know, clearly that guy knows something you don't.
Yeah, no more of that! Shortly after I got the message from the publisher, my wife, wheels ever turning in her attorney's brain, asked me the inevitable question. "So do you have the sequel planned?"
God dammit. I'll take a day or two to bask. Then I know that uncomfortable itch in the back of my brain will start nagging me once more. Here we go again...:)