But before I get to that, I have a funny story. If you don't care about the funny story, just skip down to the bold part.
Remember this from ComicCon? Basically, Larry Correia being awesome and introducing me to Kevin J. Anderson and saying that not only would he blurb my book if they published it, but would also book bomb it?
Back up to the previous night.
Big group of us at dinner. Afterward, the party breaks up somewhat, and I'm outside shooting the breeze with the handsome and hard-working Peter Wacks, an acquisitions editor for WordFire Press. He's talking about his urban fantasy and how his werewolves work, and another of his authors is talking about his werewolves and how they work, and I think, Well, this is right in my wheelhouse, isn't it. No, it wasn't a question. I have a split second of hesitation, and then I think I should just go for it, because what do I have to lose, and say, "So, this is the part where I ask you what your acquisitions process is."
Peter says, "Pitch me your book."
For about five seconds. Sooo was not ready for that. BUT. I do have an elevator pitch, and I sputter while desperately dragging it to the forefront of my mind where I can, you know, actually use it. I put on my best radio announcer voice and say "A private eye with PTSD--"
And Peter says, "Stop. Send me a chapter. Doesn't matter which one."
Turns out that he was a private eye for a year while doing research for a novel, and he works closely with a PTSD charity. I knew neither of these facts, but I managed to hit two of his sweet spots in five words. As they say in the business: SCORE.
The thing with Larry happened the next day. After the event was over, I sent Peter the chapter he requested. Chapter One, because that's where I set up all the dominoes, and if he doesn't want to read farther after that, well, I don't deserve to be published because I haven't done my job of hooking the reader.
Couple of weeks went by, and I hear from Peter again. "I like your style; send me an outline for the rest of the book."
So I do. This was... October? By then? And then there's radio silence. For months. Until I hear from a mutual friend, "Peter wants to talk to you at either FanX or LTUE." Pins and needles commence. And, of course WordFire didn't come to the FanX because Reasons. But LTUE was two weeks later, which doesn't seem like long, but by the time it rolled around, I was absolutely screaming inside.
Peter and I made an appointment for 7:15pm on February 12. "Walk with me," says he, and we head over to the Indian restaurant. He sends Alexi Vanderberg off ahead of us, and then says "We've all talked it over, and we'd like to offer you a novel contract."
I'm pretty sure I made a noise only dogs could hear, but Alexi later told me "I thought you tripped or ran into something because I heard you make a noise, and then I realized, oh, he must have told her." LOL
I now have a signed contract in my hand. We're looking toward a release in time for SLComicCon so I can hand a copy to Jim Butcher and tell him "thank you"--which is lightning-fast. I just hope my editor doesn't think it's egregiously awful.
I've been sitting on this news since February. You might have noticed I was a bit sneaky in the entry where I announced the re-sale of the dragons-in-space story, where I said I hadn't had a short fiction sale since October. Well. "Short" was the operative word there. ;)
So. On the strength of a pitch, a first chapter, an outline, and Larry Correia saying that I'm awesome...
I have a book deal.
FRIENDS. DO THE DANCE OF JOY WITH ME.