I haven’t told the story of how I sold my first book in a long time so here goes. In 1987, I entered Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart Contest for unpublished members, and one of my judges was an author named Meagan McKinney. She recommended my book to her agent and that was how I signed with an agent, who began submitting my proposal. We had interest from a couple of houses, but Dell couldn’t buy it because it wasn’t completed, and Avon wanted some rewrites, which I did. I was at the RWA conference in Seattle when my agent told me Avon had rejected it, but Dell still wanted the book. My close girlfriends, Penny Williamson, Kristin Hannah, Elaine Coffman, and by then, Megan McKinney, took me to the hotel bar where they bought me fun girlie drinks with paper umbrellas and made me laugh so I wouldn’t feel bad about Avon’s rejection.(Girlfriends are the best!)
I had volunteered to monitor the conference’s editor appointments that afternoon and went straight there from the bar. My job was to watch the time, 10 minutes, for the two editors, one from Harlequin Historical and one from Pocket, then usher in the next interview. These silly women were not showing up for their editor appointments, and the Pocket editor, Kathy Bradley was just sitting there, alone. My family is from Texas, and I was raised that you don’t just leave someone sitting there alone, her so I walked up–I had no inhibitions from my cocktails– and made a little joke about the no-shows. She laughed and asked, “What do you write?” and told me to sit down and tell her about my book. Now…I had no pitch ready and got terribly mush-mouthed and burst out laughing and said, “I really write much better than I speak.” She gave me her card, asked who my agent was, told me to submit the book.
Meanwhile, the Dell editor just wanted more pages so she could buy the book and that night she took me to their small author dinner and introduced me as the next Dell author. While I was there, Kathy Bradley found my agent at a cocktail party and asked her to send my proposal. Two months later, I sold to Pocket after an auction between Pocket and Dell. This was 1988, and it took them two years to fit me into their schedule. The Heart’s Haven came out in 1990 and hit the B Dalton Bestseller list for three weeks. The rest is history!
And now, some 30 plus years later, my next book is coming in June, MY ONE & ONLY, Book 2 in The Sisters of Scotland series. Here’s sneak peek at the cover, and a link its website page.
Headstrong Caitrin has loved Finn Douglas for as long as she can remember, but when her betrothal to him is imminent, he accuses her of an act she never committed, and she goes home in shame and humiliation…until three years later, when the king demands Cait wed Douglas, and she decides to make his life a living hell.
When a stranger, a golden knight who is one of the king’s barons, comes to Glenna Gordon’s isolated island farm, she learns her whole life has been a lie. Lyall Roberston, Baron Montrose, carries a secret royal order to take Glenna to the father she has never known, a man so powerful he has hidden his daughter away to protect her from his enemies.