Monday, December 5, 2011

S-o-o-o, here's the REST of the story... (so far)

A couple weeks ago I received an offer of representation for my newest book: Traveling Down The Wests’ Lane. After letting this process through my mind and clapping my hands over my mouth to keep from screaming out loud ( I got the email on my phone in church), I remembered I had 2 other fulls out and wrote the publisher back and told him I’d have to let those people know, but I’d love to say ‘yes’. 

Ten minutes later I had an email from this same publisher offering me a THREE book deal instead of just the one. Super-stoked, I sent an email off to my friend, Caleb, whose book became a national best seller the month before, asking him to review the contract when I received it. http://calebwarnock.blogspot.com/2011/10/my-book-is-officially-national.html

Caleb called me later to tell me that not only was the contract NOT shabby, he was impressed that a children’s literary agent was also interested in my book-- as well as his own editor -- and decided to offer me a competing contract.

So…..after spending a few days contemplating both offers and waiting for the literary agent to weigh in, I decided to go with Caleb’s offer. YEAH!!! 

Since then, we have been planning the details: finding a Ginnie to get ready for a photo shoot for all three book covers, having the MS edited, writing the back of the book blurb, a marketing plan and all of the other fun stuff that comes along with the business of publishing a book. 

In the words of Tillie (my other MC) E—e-e-e-e-!!  :O)

PS: Happy 4th Birthday to my youngest child. :) I'm so grateful to have you in my life. :)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

It only takes one ‘YES’!

It’s true, in the life of a writer it only takes one ‘yes’ to turn an otherwise dreary day around. 

For example, a couple of weeks ago I spent two days querying agents for my new book: Traveling Down The Wests’ Lane. On Day 3, I got a couple of rejections and a request for a full manuscript and another rejection. I spent the next day and a half re-reading my MS, finding/fixing/ grammar errors, plot holes, etc. I sent off the MS and went back to querying, hoping for the best. I got more rejections and two more requests for fulls over the next week.

Then at 6:15 AM about a week after the first request for a full, I got my ‘yes’: 


Holy Macaroni! I danced on the ceiling, hovering between pure glee and ‘can this really be REAL?’ 

But every time I read the words:

So ... Monique, our question to you: May we send you a contract for Traveling Down The Wests' Lane for a July 2012 release, in ebook and paperback? 

My response was Yes, YES, YES!!!!!! (Please and Thank YOU!!)

(The day got even better—but you’ll have to tune in Monday (which is my birthday) for all the exciting details.)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

As promised, I want to share with you a good friend’s up and coming bestselling novel.
(I have faith in him—it will happen. :) )

Here’s is J. D. Field's book blurb:

What does an ancient legend have to do with a modern day girl trying to fit in at her pretentious boarding school? For 16-year-old Maddy Bride… everything. She knows she’ll have to deal with sport-obsessed rich kids, cliques, and pressure, but she never imagined myths from the shadowy past would take place around her. And that she might be part of them.

Her new classmate, Eddy Moon, is awkward, shy, having lived a life of hardship and loneliness. As his strength and sense of purpose become more and more striking, Maddy comes to believe that he may have a place in the legends and finds herself pulled into his magnetic presence and the realization that not only is he a mythic hero returned to life in the countryside, but maybe she, too, is compelled to him for the same reason. Torn between normality and her attraction to the magnificent Eddy Moon, Maddy has to decide who she is, who she is going to be, and whether stories must end the same way twice.

This is the first book in the LEVELS series. The second, 'Rock Anthem' will be released in November 2011 and the third in January 2012.

For more information, go to jdfield.blogspot.com. Joe has lots of interesting stuff there

Here is the link to his book. Enjoy! I did. ;)


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Yikes! Where has the time gone?!

Wow, it's been a while since I blogged. I had planned to blog about all my friends getting new contracts and self-publishing and the time has gotten away from me!

School has started since I last blogged and because I have 12 kids, I thought that would translate into more writing time--well, it did and it didn't. I just finished my second novel, TRAVELING DOWN THE WEST'S LANE. A contemporary story set on a farm about twelve-year-old best friends who have very diverse pasts. One Ginnie West, a half-orphaned girl growing up in a close-knit family with 4 men and a twin brother and the other, Tillie Taylor, abandoned years ago by an abusive father, being raised by a mother who wants better for her daughter. Together, they have one goal: to be sisters. 

In a one week period about a month ago--three of my best writing friends all got contracts for their books.  Three others self-published their novels and another became a national best selling author. Of course I want to celebrate and promote each of them, especially since I read and exchanged critiques with most of them before they published. :) 

So, in the VERY near future, I will post a link to the ones that are published and help you find their books. Each are worth your investment of time and money to purchase and read. And lucky us, all seven are in different genres: YA, Middle Grade, historical fiction, western, gardens, urban fantasy and women's fiction, so there truly is something for everybody. I will say upfront that I may be biased, but it's not because these authors are my friends, it's because they have each written a fantastic book.

Please tune in and check them out. Take care, Monique

Monday, July 11, 2011

What Puts You in Your 'Happy Place'?

I love country music. As a writer, I find certain songs transport me right smack dab into the middle of my books. It won’t surprise any of you that know me well they that I skip through most drinking and cheating songs. I’ve been happily married for 26 years and don’t have use for infidelity. Though I do make an exception for Carrie Underwood’s ‘Before He Cheats’—I love a woman who refuses to be a victim.

What appeals to me about country music is the plethora of ‘family’ and patriotic songs. What’s not to love about music that treasures home and country? Songs that celebrate hard work, loyalty, service to one another, helping out a friend, being there for another and faith in God? Life is NOT a ‘do-it-yourself’ project, it’s an “I’m-here-to-help-if-I-can” deal.

Helping can be as simple as crying with someone when they are dealt a rough hand or coordinating the myriad of details when a surgery disrupts family routine: child care, food needs, transportation and the never-ending piles of laundry.

In the words of  two country songs: It’s just life. It’s what we do.

I am partial to ‘front porch’ songs: I haven’t heard one I don’t like. My favorite two are Tracy Lawrence’s “If the World had a Front Porch”, a song that extolls the virtues of treating people like good neighbors and kin, solving the world’s problems with understanding and enjoying the blessings of a front porch swing.

The front porch swing has set the scene for many a first kiss, a gentle scolding for bad behavior, a quiet moment between two people, rocking in peace and harmony with just crickets and frogs to play background music.

If the world had a front porch like we did back then
We'd still have our problems but we'd all be friends
Treatin' your neighbor like he's your next of kin
Wouldn't be gone with the wind
If the world had a front porch like we did back then

Lonestar’s : “My Front Porch Looking In.” is a song about prioritizing family, a song where a man has it all: a music career that provides well for his family, but he doesn’t feel complete until he’s home, looking in through his front door and seeing the important people in his world: his wife and children.

Both songs transport me instantly into the middle of my West books: a series about a family who have known many trials, but who come together and help and strengthen one another rather than divide and fall apart. The West family farm is modeled after one I spent every possible moment I could as a teen.

I loved the front porch, I loved the swing, and I loved the steps as well. I often sat gazing at a small flock of white ducks playing in the nearby creek, shaded by huge maple trees. The smell of growing alfalfa or corn wafting through in the air. Good times. Moments that made all the difference in a hurried life.

One day I will have a home in the country with an extra-large kitchen and huge table for my family to gather around. Almost as important will be the front porch, complete with an extra-large swing in hopes that many a memory will be forged and shared.

My blessing are in front of me, it’s not about the land.
I’ll never beat the view from my front porch looking in.