If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.


Our reason for creating WWK originated as an outlet for our love of reading and writing mystery fiction. We hope you love it, too, and will enjoy our holiday gifts to our readers with original short stories to celebrate the season. Starting on 11/16 stories by Warren Bull, Margaret S. Hamilton, Paula Gail Benson, Linda Rodriguez, KM Rockwood, Gloria Alden, and E. B. Davis will appear every Thursday into the New Year.


Our November Author Interviews: 11/8--Ellen Byron, and 11/15--Sujata Massey. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.


November Saturday Bloggers: 11/4 Margaret S. Hamilton and 11/11 Cheryl Hollon.


Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.


In addition, our prolific KM will have the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," just published, will appear in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: a Fifth Course of Chaos.


James M. Jackson's 4th book in the Seamus McCree series, Doubtful Relations, is now available. His novella "Low Tide at Tybee" appears February 7 as part of Lowcountry Crimes: Four Novellas, which is available for order.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Signed Contract

On Friday (July 9, 2010) I signed a contract with Master Point Press to publish my bridge book targeted for Intermediate/Novice players. It is scheduled to be published in Fall 2011, so you have lots of time to take up bridge between now and then so you’ll want to buy the book.

All kidding aside, I’m delighted Master Point Press, a small publisher located in Toronto and specializing in bridge books, will be my publisher. The process of obtaining this contract got me to thinking.

In 2009 I became the reigning Queen of Rejection of the Guppy Chapter of the Sisters in Crime. (Yes, I am really a guy; and yes, the Sisters in Crime and their chapters enthusiastically welcome men as long as they support the organizational objectives and obey the rules.) I earned the title because for the period of the contest I racked up the largest number of rejections from agents and/or publishers. As consolation for winning, I received a gift certificate from the Guppies and lots of cyber-chocolate.

Those were nice consolation, but the best gift I received was a piece of information from one of the other past Queens. She told me that most of the previous Queens of Rejection had gone on to be published.

Unlike the plethora of rejections I received for my first two novels, I sent my bridge book proposal only to Master Point Press. They read the proposal and asked for the complete manuscript. After reading the complete manuscript, they had a couple of suggestions and wanted the book 50% longer. Once I delivered that, they offered a contract.

Why were they interested in my book? One reason was I had identified a market niche that they agreed was underserved.

Underserved markets are a big difference between fiction and nonfiction. Spend some time and you can find them in nonfiction. In fiction, I’m not sure there is such a thing as an underserved market—at least not until the vampire trend morphs into something else and for a short while there aren’t enough books in the pipeline containing the something else. Unfortunately, to serve that previously unidentified niche you had to already have your novel written and be the first to enter the breach. Daunting, to say the least.

The second reason they liked my work was voice. I’m not a grand Pooh-Bah of the bridge world. After a 30+-year layoff I started playing bridge again four years ago. I wrote the book I wished I had available to me while I was learning. I illustrated the lessons in the book with mistakes I observed Intermediate/Novices making (including lots of my own). One of my early readers said reading the book was like listening to me talk—which you either like or don’t; fortunately the publisher did.

In the end, voice carried the day. Developing voice is a necessary but not sufficient condition to becoming published. In the world of bridge books, in another 15 months (and if the creek don’t rise) I will have met the other necessary conditions to having a published work. In the fiction world, I’m still plugging away. As one of the former Queens of Rejection told me, often the difference between success and failure in this business is the difference between trying yet again and giving up. Literary Agent Michelle Gardner also makes this point in her blog yesterday.

Let’s hear it for trying yet again.

~Jim

No comments: