I decided to write about the steps it took to get one manuscript accepted for publication. Not sure of the title yet so for now I will call it Middle Grade 1 (MG1).
MG1 was born the summer of 2012 in the city of Sedona, Arizona. The seed was planted during a trip to the Wupatki Ruins. Something spoke to me that day, not sure what but I felt the urge to write. My husband, Bill and I were on vacation to a place he always wanted to see. Me, I the ocean was calling, but I settled for the desert. We had already visited the town a few times, had walked through shops, journeyed the places where our map directed us to see if we could feel what others felt when traveling to various locations of Vortex. We read all the information about what could happen to one upon being in tune with the spiritual experience. Well, at one location it really did happen. The peace was amazing.
My only problem was the sun. Too much time in the sun is one of my migraine triggers. and yes I suffered a few. The day we planned a golf excursion I told Bill to go. I couldn’t. Instead, I pulled out my computer and started typing. The words started to flow. No, there was no outline, just a tiny seed that started to grow. Before I knew it I had several pages and the beginnings of a middle grade chapter book.
I wrote from family experience, professional experience and conversations with friends. Through all this I created a boy,who had anger issues. A boy who appeared to care more about himself, he never took time to see what was going on around him. No, I do not know any one individual like this, his character just seem to evolve over time.
Being part of a critique group I would read chapters in group and take notes on the feedback given. I wrote off and on for several years. On one trip to Portland, Oregon I participated in a round table talk and pitched my story. Although the agent liked the idea and asked to see it, this was MG1’s first rejection. There were many more rejections in MG1’s journey.
When I became disappointed, I would put MG1 “to bed,” and work on other stories. Four years later I am happy to announce that MG1 caught the interest on one publisher. I am working with the publisher, and one of his editors, my seed has grown, and now I am going through another process of watching it take on a new form. Before going to the editor, I read the whole manuscript, a chapter a day to the two sixth grade classes at Sierra View Elementary School. The kids did an amazing job of “editing,” they gave the boy a twelve year old voice when I couldn’t. These kids took ownership of the story. Now my editor, with the help of my publisher are breathing new life into MG1. I am learning patience, and listening to suggestions and watching cuts take place. The cuts are something new to me. I am used to people suggesting ways to add on to make the story stronger or better, now I am learning through cuts how to make the story stronger. I tend to lecture too much when talking and I guess I do the same in my writing. I think it comes from teaching.
When MG1 goes from being a manuscript to a book I will make the announcement.
Now on to another project that has been taking a nap for a while.