Today I’m excited to have Rachel Magee here, sharing her Path to Publication story. Without further ado, here’s Rachel…
It’s hard to say when I started writing because I don’t remember not writing. As early as elementary school I was scribbling stories on notebooks in my free time. I wrote my first novel length book when I was twelve and entered it in a contest for young writers. I would make my friends plot out stories with me and spent hours curled up with my favorite pen and trusty spiral notebook.
But never during any of that time did I ever consider being a published author. To me, published authors were superheroes, the rare elite who were predestined to be famous and possessed special super writing powers. I was just me. My stories weren’t special. I wrote them because I couldn’t not write them, because my happy place was in front of a computer making characters come alive.
Then, one day my husband was transferring files to my new computer and asked if I ever thought about trying to get them published. I told him my superhero theory, to which he responded with a simple sentence that changed the way I thought about my writing.
“Every published author started out unpublished.”
Huh. So I decided to give it a shot. That week, when I was at the public library with my kids, I checked out three books on how to write and publish a novel. There were so many words I didn’t know it made my head spin. Critique partner, beta readers, query letters, synopsis writing. I had a lot to learn!
About a year after that, I sent out my first query letter. Daily, I checked my email in eager anticipation of my future as a published author. It should come as no surprise to anyone in the writing community that the answer to that first query was no. Along with the responses to a whole lot of queries after that. But because my kids were watching me go through this journey, I wasn’t willing to give up. I wanted to be the example of working hard to achieve your goals not the example of throwing in the towel when it got hard. Although between us, it was much tougher than I had imagined.
One day, my critique partner told me about a publisher she’d heard of who would be a perfect fit for me. Then she called every day after that to see if I had submitted to them. I finally did it just so she would talk about something else. And guess what? That publisher offered me my first contract!
I can’t describe the day I got the final galley of Happily Ever Afters. The book was so beautiful with the fancy cover, the real copyright page, and my name in big letters on the front. As it turned out, published authors weren’t superheroes. They were people like you and me who had stories in our heads and the persistence to see our dreams to fruition. And maybe we have a dash of super powers, too. After all, every book holds a little bit of magic.
Happy writing, friends.
Lainey Stratton does not fall in love with strangers she meets on vacation. It simply doesn’t make logical sense. So when Lainey meets Carter Thompson on the first day of her Caribbean vacation, she knows it could never amount to anything more than a crush. At the end of the vacation she will return to Dallas and he will return to DC, and that will be the end of it. Well, unless he wants to join her at a friend’s destination wedding, which would be considered vacation too, right?
But when an unexpected tragedy sends Lainey’s logical world spiraling out of control, she realizes her vacation crush might be the only one who can help her pick up the pieces of her shattered life. That is, as long as she can get out of the way of her own happiness. And as long as Carter’s past doesn’t catch up with him before she gets a chance.
About the Author:
Rachel wrote her first novel when she was twelve and entered it into a contest for young author/illustrators. Unfortunately, the judges weren’t impressed with her stick figures. So she dropped the dream of becoming a world famous illustrator and stuck to spinning stories. When she’s not busy working on her latest book, she loves to travel with her family and friends. By far, her favorite destination is the beach, which tends to work its way into most of her stories.
Between vacations, you can find her at home in The Woodlands, TX with her wonderful husband, their two adventurous kids and a couple of spirited pets, all of whom share Rachel’s love of the ocean. Well, except the cat and dog. They’re both afraid of water. Find out more about what Rachel has been up to at rachelmageebooks.com.
Connect with Rachel: