Hitting Your Stride

I started writing a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. I was a good storyteller but not a good writer. I took classes at vocational college. I read books on writing. I submitted. I have a file of rejection letters. Most basically said ‘no thanks’. A precious few actually made suggestions that I still cling to. (To which I cling is more grammatically correct, but sounds foppish)

After a weekend seminar in the country by none other than Bram Stoker Award winner Jonathan Maberry, I began to sell a few short stories. No luck on novels. I grew tired of waiting and self published one and sold one to Publish America, which is almost the same thing as self publishing. I won’t go into that six-year ordeal. I managed to sell a few hundred but no big bucks. After about 30 published short stories and still no novel sales, I buckled down and studied other writers.

Ta Da! I sold a novel, Hell Rig, to Damnation Books and my rejection letters grew more complimentary. Last fall I sold a vampire novel to Severed Press. Blood Lust did okay but no real winner. Then Severed Press published Ice Station Zombie. It has been out 2 1/2 months and is doing well. Judgment Day, first of a 3-part series followed and is also doing well.

Damnation Books has also bought Shadow Walker. It is due for release in Sept. of 2012.

I’ve pitched novels at conventions many times. I received some nice comments but no takers. However, this year at the World Horror Con in Salt Lake City I pitched a YA sci-fi novel, Oracle of Delphi to four publishers. Montag Press just e-mailed me that they want it.

2012 seems to be my breakout year. I’ll take lots of small press sales, but I still would like that large press attention. With my name out there more often in both horror and sci-fi genres, just maybe it will happen.

I write a lot and send out a lot of manuscripts. I don’t mind rewrites or editing. In fact, I enjoy it. Everything I learn I take to my next novel. (Maybe that’s the true secret of success)

Novel pitching is an excellent opportunity, Face to face is best. If a publisher doesn’t like you, they won’t back you. I would suggest to every author out there to take advantage con pitch sessions. You can pitch to venues otherwise open to only agented submissions. I see established authors pitching. maybe they know something, huh?

2012 is going to be my break out year. Make it your too.

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