I always thought my first published works would be fiction. That was back when I was naive about how hard it can be to break into this industry. After attempting to get an agent with my first books, I switched gears and jumped into nonfiction, my other passion. The process was smooth in many respects, and I quickly found both an agent and a book deal. And then another. Within a couple of years, I had two books on the shelves and a bright speaking career.
But, I still had made little to no headway with my first passion - writing fiction. While I was busy breaking into nonfiction, I wrote an angel-demon story and queried it. The response was great. But not great enough. So, after a year of querying and coming VERY CLOSE with a small press, I decided to shelve the book.
Over the next year, I lived on a roller coaster. I published my second nonfiction book, had two additional nonfiction books get passed over in acquisitions, and parted ways with my agent. In my personal life, I got seriously ill, went through a fatal round of cancer with my mom, and struggled to find balance at work.
Shortly after my mom passed away, I wrote what I thought was my best work. I edited it, and queried it. For months. And like the novel before, I came very very close. But, I did not find an agent.
In a moment of desperation, I seriously considered quitting. More than once, actually. Many of you who followed this blog during that time know how much I struggled.
An then the miraculous happened. I fell into a book deal that has changed everything, breathing life into what I thought was a dead fiction career. In addition, I got a promotion at work, started several exciting new projects related to my nonfiction, and lost much of the weight that was literally holding me down.
Interesting how life turns, isn't it?
And now, on the eve of my fiction career becoming more than just an idea, I find myself humbled and thankful for the journey, with all its twists and turns. I have a long way to go before I'll achieve what I have set out to achieve. But I am beyond thankful for the opportunity to connect to readers with my fiction. And I am thankful for the reactions it is getting thus far.
What's next? Um...breathing. In and Out. Every day.