Lately I've turned my attention to my second book, because while the first book was meant to be more of a beach read, this one is more complex and I feel strongly about it. I've also been thinking happy thoughts, looking for fairy dust on the internet and praying to the writing gods.
And sometimes the Universe answers.
I belong to a great online women's fiction critique group and through the group I met Alison. (I liked her immediately as that's my main character's name!) Alison told me about the Women's Fiction Writers Association. I joined and right away felt like I found my tribe. It's well run, the members are super supportive and they do things to really help us on our journey. Recently, I participated in their pitch workshop. 80 of us helped each other fine tune our pitch. A pitch is your novel synthesized down to 50 words, hopefully with a hook that will entice agents to give you a request for pages. And yes, it's as hard to do as it sounds.
Alison came to my rescue again, and helped make my pitch better than I could have ever done on my own.
Once our pitches were solid, 80 of us participated in pitch week. We posted them online and about a dozen agents came by for a look. Sadly, a lot of folks didn't get request, but many got 1 or 2. A few got 7 or 8 and I got 5!! Thank you universe. Three of those have come back and requested the full manuscript.
Around the same time the WFWA announced the five finalist for the Rising Star Contest (unpublished authors...that's why we're rising :-) SHUT UP! When I saw my book on the list I seriously thought I was hallucinating. I'm so humbled, and the other finalist are so great ... we're all rooting for each other! Winner to be announced Sept. 22. Fingers crossed!
At the end of the day, I know publishing is a business. I know agents and editors and publishers want to be wowed. Maybe I'm not a wow kinda gal, but the affirmation I've gotten of late was much needed and oh so appreciated. This may lead to something...but just as easily could come up goose eggs. No matter, I'll keep on until I write that book they can't say no to.
In the meantime, if anyone knows where to buy that fairy dust, give me a yell. (This is the lovely badge the WFWA folks gave me to put on my website.)