Saturday, December 15, 2007

One Writer's Journey

In the summer of 2006 I finally sat down and did what I'd always wanted to do, write a book. For the next two months, that was what I did whenever I had a moment to spare. Working two jobs for an average of 48-60 hours per week, plus throw my husband and four kids into the mix, it was no easy task, but after 2 months, I completed my first manuscript which was 309 pages. A comedic romantic suspense that I absolutely adored! It was perfect. The best book ever written.

Right?

WRONG!

Boy, was I ever in for a huge surprise. Everyone wanted to be the next famous author. I was a grain of sand on a sandy beach. I sent my book out to agents, only to promptly get rejected. One agent was even kind enough to write a nice comment, "Sorry, but the characters weren't as deep as I thought they were going to be."

Deep characters? What was he talking about? Needing to know what was wrong with my MS, I promptly started researching on the internet only to learn how much my book really stunk! Apparantly, there are rules in writing that next best seller, and I'd pretty much broken all of them. *sigh*

Determined to learn everything I could, I joined a national romance writing organization called Romance Writers of America. My life has not been the same since. Through RWA, I joined my local chapter Heartland Writers Group, became part of a critique group and learned about the craft of writing. I wrote every day and joined HWG's board members as their communications coordinator. I organizing chapter contests, helped re-do their website, and entered RWA writing contests.

I never gave up. I never let life get in the way of my goal of becoming published. I continued to produce those pages.

Ready to try again, I sent a query to The Wild Rose Press for my second completed manuscript, The Doctor's Deception. Within two days, I received a request for a partial manuscript. I promptly sent the first three chapters per their instructions. Eight weeks later, I received a request for a full manuscript. And, a week later, an email from my editor with an offer for a contract.

My hands trembled and my heart raced. I yelled for my husband who was in the other room with the kids and he came running into the living room thinking I was dying or the house was being robbed. I tackled him, shouting, "You have to read my email!" I had done it! I was going to be a published author! My kids were jumping up and down hugging me, too. Once I was calmer, I called the rest of my family to tell them the news, then started sending out emails to my friends and fellow RWA members.

Now that I have a contract, I'm not staying idle. When "The Doctor's Deception" was completed, I started my next project. Perseverance and hard work does pay off. Be active. Get involved. Learn your craft, and you will be sucessful. Those are the things I have learned on my writer's journey.

***

Kathleen Grieve has been a registered nurse for twelve years, and writes medical romances with humor and spice. Her website is currently under construction. Soon, you will be able to see her at www.kathleengrieve.com. In the meantime, check her out her myspace page for her continued journey as a romance author at http://www.myspace.com/kathleengail789

9 comments:

  1. Excellent story. You inspire me!

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  2. "Perseverance and hard work does pay off." Yes it does, and that's never been more evident than lately. You're one of several authors I know who've gotten early Christmas presents this year in the form of a 1, 2 or 3 book sale. Who says December is a hard time of year sell? That myth's been majorly busted this year. Mega congrats!

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  3. Kath-- Everyone here at the diner is SOOO proud of you!!!

    I really don't know how you did it. My schedule is nutty but yours is just INSANE!

    It's a well-deserved success!

    Pie for everyone! On the house!

    YAYAYAYAY!

    talia

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  4. YAY KATHLEEN! And you all want to check out her myspace, because she always has some nice eye candy on there:-) Lori, I also know several people who've just sold...guess it really is "the most wonderful time of the year!" Here's me, raising a mug of mulled cider and toasting Kathleen's success. Cheers, you!

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  5. My comment never showed up .... weird. So I'll tell you again -- congratulations! What are you writing next? :)

    Jody W.

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  6. THANKS everyone for the support and warm wishes! I truly couldn't have done anything without the support of my fellow authors. As to what's next....Anyone ready for one hunky fireman who tangles his water hose with an ER nurse? Jett Avery has never had so much FUN playing with fire! I hope to have "DATING 9-1-1" completed by February, 2008! And, like Kendra said, stop by my MYSPACE page where I've posted my "novel inspiration"!

    Kathleen Grieve
    Future Release by The Wild Rose Press: THE DOCTOR'S DECEPTION.

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  7. Love your journey story. It's inspiring. You myspace is fab!! I'll have get my son to help me update mine. We'll go out when you get a chance to come back and visit.

    Theresa

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  8. Kathleen, congratulations all over again on your sale! I always knew your enthusiasm would lead you to success. Loved your blog!

    Good news on the website, too--in your name, no less. Awesome! Can't wait to see it all done.

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