Monday, October 2, 2017

Going for It

Debra is almost ready to submit her latest WIP.

A few months ago when I posted I was having a bit of a dilemma. I was debating on where I wanted to submit my WIP. I've had it in my mind for a while now that I'd like to branch out in an attempt to launch the next phase of my writing career by submitting to a new publisher. At the time (about two months ago) my biggest issue was the word count of the mss. The publisher I wanted to submit to required a word count of 85,000. My mss wasn't even at 65,000 (Although it was close.)

I solicited a bunch of opinions and had an author friend do a beta read for me. She gave me some very helpful suggestions, which I incorporated into the story. After doing my own hard-copy read-through, I found a bunch of places where additional scenes were needed. I found a lot of phrases like "In the six weeks since she'd been at the ranch..." Or, "With just a few weeks left to go in the cast..." Or even just mentions..."She'd gone for a horseback ride that day." Or "He showed her how to ride the ATVs." Lots and lots of places where I told instead of showed and hurried the time line. In the process, missing out on many ways to deepen my story.

So I decided to make those additions, as they would definitely add to the story and not just be filler. At this moment, my mss stands at 85,590 words. I'm in the process of minute edits. Getting rid of 'that', 'seemed to', 'tried to', 'to him', 'to her', etc.

I have a punch list of items to check: time line, checking chapters are sequentially numbered and spaced correctly, etc.

Per the guidelines on the web-site, I've also written a synopsis, author bio which includes previous books written, and brief descriptions of other books I have planned.

Even though I read through the guidelines for submission to the new publisher with a fine tooth comb, I was a bit uncertain if I should submit a query or the full mss as a submission. I e-mailed the editor this weekend for clarification, not expecting to hear back for a few weeks (as stated in their information). To my surprise and excitement, I had a response this morning already. She said to send the full along with a synopsis and brief descriptions of other planned books.

My first reaction was to get the sucker out ASAP. I'm heading out of town the end of this week for a conference for work and then on a family vacation over the long weekend. My knee-jerk reaction was to send it out before leaving on Wednesday.

Then rational thinking (thank goodness) kicked in. I don't want to rush this. There are still things I need to make sure are A-okay before submitting. So I'm going to do what I can in the next two nights. Let the project sit while I'm gone for almost a week. (Which will be good since I've been looking at it everyday for months and months now.) Do a final read-through when I get back, and THEN submit. I've waited this long to submit this particular project, waiting another week certainly won't kill me, AND probably makes the most logical sense.

So, I'm going to put myself out there and go for it. Like Wayne Gretsky said, "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."

Wish me luck!

Until next time,

Happy Reading!



  1. You won't need much luck, Debra. Maybe a splash of pixie dust and a few crossed fingers.
    You are a fantastic storyteller who has upped her game with this manuscript. You are meeting the publisher's guidelines.
    Every publisher is looking for well-crafted stories that don't need an heavy investment into line-editing and spell-checking.
    I suspect things will work out happily ever after.

    1. I hope so! And since this one is "The Cowboy and the Princess" it has quite a few fairy tale references throughout, so your comments are right on the money!


  2. I'm so excited for you, Debra. I'm glad you decided to go for it, AND I'm glad you're waiting until it's completely polished. Good luck!

    1. Thanks...I'll have fingers and toes crossed for quite a while. But that will give me time to start the next project. :)

  3. Yay, congrats, Deb - and you're right not to rush it. Will keep everything crossed for you.

    1. Thanks, Paula. It's hard having the patience, but I'm hoping it will pay off in the long run!