Hello everyone! On this blog tour stop author Connie Ann Michael has written a short guest post on her road to publishing for us! Read it below:
I started writing about seven years ago and I have to say I first had struggles with trying to even find anyone to Beta read anything I wrote. I joined groups and found people here and there but they always bailed and/or waited until I provided feedback and dumped me. I worried I was being too harsh but I thought they wanted honest reviews. So I ended up doing a lot of contests and getting feedback that way.
Doing these contests also enabled me to get a bit of an idea about the indie publishing arena. I thought the Indie avenue would be a good direction, so I joined a group that had a slush pile you could try to get into and then your synopsis and query were sent out to a variety of small publishing houses. I was lucky enough, I thought, to get offered a contract from one.
I was so excited and told everyone I knew I got a contract and then things got weird. I received my contract and thank goodness they had the title and my name wrong. So I didn’t sign it and asked for a new contract. It was months and I didn’t hear anything. Come to find out through some investigating and another author, who had received a contract, that they was some upheaval in the company and all hell broke loose. I was lucky enough not to get my book tied to them because the other author had signed and they weren’t willing to let the book go and they were not in a position to publish it. To this day her book is in limbo.
I stepped away from the industry for a bit and reassessed what I wanted. When Entranced popped up, I watched what it was doing. They took a good year to establish what they wanted out of their published books before putting anything out there. I read one of their titles before even submitting. I loved their submission process at the time. It was on Twitter and I had to submit a tag line that fit in the parameters of a tweet. It was hard to get my story down to a bare bones explanation but it was so much easier than writing the dreaded query. I was so excited after my first full was requested that I wrote up posts for my next two finished novels. I have been lucky enough to have found a publisher that surrounds its writers with good people that makes our writing even better.
Awwww! We love you too Connie! And now that you know more about Connie’s road to publishing, why not learn more about her book, 1000 SLEEPLESS NIGHTS? Check out the blurb and an excerpt below!
Twenty-two year old Corpsman Emme Sawyer doesn’t follow rules. She’s always been the best and no one will die if she has anything to say about it.
Emme refuses to hang around the hospital waiting for the wounded to come to her and joins a Marine unit heading into Helmand Providence, the largest opium producer in Afghanistan. Shutting off her emotions, Emme focuses on what she does best…keeping her men safe. When her best friend is obliterated by a roadside bomb, Emme begins to realize she can’t save everyone. Seeking comfort from Raven, her commanding officer, Emme develops feelings that don’t belong in a combat zone where each step could be your last. As Raven reciprocates, Emme learns you can’t choose when and where love finds you.
A few men were standing around a water pump a short distance away, washing the dust off their faces and filling water bottles. Sawyer headed their way. She needed to scrub the blood from her hands. The men stepped back when she approached. She used the long handle to prime the pump; then placed her hands under the water when it spewed from the small opening. She worked her hands together, scrubbing at the dried-brown blood around her fingernails and up her forearms. The water felt good, cool, and refreshing after the heat. She opened the neck of her jacket and tilted her head back. She wiped her damp hands down her throat and on her chest.
Tahk walked over to where she stood, his voice strained. “Sawyer, um…you need to stop.”
She opened her eyes, blinking. “What?”
He raised his eyebrows and tilted his head to the side. She followed his head bob. The men sent to break holes in the wall had stopped their work and stood, leaning on shovels, their eyes trained on where Sawyer was standing. Raven stood to the side, his mouth set in a tight line while he watched the men watch her.
Water dripped from her chin. Raven shifted his gaze to her. His expression conflicted. Either he was angry at the men for staring, or angry at her for making them. Sawyer wasn’t sure.
“It’s like you’re in a wet T-shirt contest,” Tahk muttered.
“I was getting the blood off.” She pulled her jacket closed.
“Just get down.” With a frustrated sigh, Tahk walked away.
Raven barked at the men, “Get your asses back to work.” They tripped over themselves to resume their pounding on the mud wall.
Embarrassed, Sawyer stepped off the ledge of the well and followed Tahk to where he had their bags. She leaned against the wall, thankful for the small amount of shade it provided.
“I didn’t do anything the others weren’t doing.”
“Give it a rest. Men don’t wipe water down their neck, letting it drip off them.” He waved his arms around in an exaggerated impersonation of her movements.
“I wasn’t doing that. I wasn’t purposely putting on a show.”
“Sawyer, sometimes just being here is show enough.”
“I don’t know why I get yelled at because men are assholes.”
“Maybe because you’re outnumbered a hundred assholes to one?”
“Yeah, but you’re still assholes.”
“No argument here, sister,” he said.
“You’ve known Raven a long time, haven’t you?” Doogie started to pry for some information.
Tahk eyed her curiously. “Why?”
“Do you think he likes me?”
“Best he doesn’t. We aren’t here to make lasting friendships.”
“Well, I don’t want him to not like me.”
Tahk stared at her. “What are you talking about?”
“He always seems pissed off at me. No matter what I do, he gives me this look of irritation. I can’t win.”
“That’s his look. Don’t take it personal,” Tahk mumbled.