Well today is the day - PUBLICATION DAY.
The day I have dreamt of for about three decades. To be fair to the publishing world, it’s not three decades of trying but rather three decades of intermittent dreaming and ‘ if onlys.’
I began writing Beyond the Past on the 26thDecember 2011 after reading Wuthering Heights for I don’t know how many times. I never get tired of Cathy and Heathcliff. When I started writing I never intended for the book to be a crime book. There were only two things I was certain of – the main character would be female, strong, independent and called Annie and rugby league would feature in it. I had no plan, no idea where the story was going… but I loved every minute of writing it. It took nine months to finish my first draft. I enlisted the help of my sister who read the chapters as I produced them. I was often told off for being on facebook instead of writing!!
Once edited, I researched all the available websites and was overwhelmed. I am probably not on my own thinking the whole process is unnecessarily convoluted and massively stacked against new writers. I spent hours trawling the internet and concluded I needed an agent to find an agent who could then find me a publisher!
So the quest began.
From September 2012 I started sending information to literary agents and some publishers, although the number of the latter taking unsolicited manuscripts is miniscule. It was a demoralising experience. I was getting nowhere, most of the time not even getting a response.
I almost gave up. Then I wrote a blog for An Authors Way and had a ‘light bulb’ moment. I created a website, facebook page and twitter account. I published the first three chapters on the website and on both An Authors Way and Authonomy websites. I started to get positive feedback and started to build an audience, which has grown steadily.
With virtually no confidence left, I was ready to accept I wouldn’t be successful. I decided to do one more desperate search of the internet and this led me to Pegasus, Elliot and MacKenzie Publishing Limited. They accepted direct submissions. I sent the information requested, though with a heavy heart knowing it was likely it would be another ‘no’. It was the best feeling in the world when an email arrived to ask for the complete manuscript. Again I sent it in not expecting much of a response. It cost me £11 to send it on (which to a Yorkshire lass is extortionate!).
Weeks passed and finally the email arrived. I opened it with trepidation thinking it was another decline. BUT it wasn’t. They loved my work and wanted to publish it. I was on cloud nine. All the hard work and persistence had paid off.
Everyone who knows me, truly knows me, knows that when I set my mind to do it, I get it done. Determination and hard work will always prevail. Even when I am almost defeated, I always have one more go, thank goodness I did.
To be part of this adventure, check out www.pamcharles.com.