I’m pleased to welcome Camille Eide to my blog today. Be sure to check out her just released book, Savanna’s Gift. I read it last week and really enjoyed the story.
My First Publishing Contract!
Last spring, I was in the middle of convincing my second novel to quit stalling and finish itself when I heard about the call for submissions at White Rose Publishing. They wanted Christmas Romance novellas for their holiday Extravaganza. The deadline was two months out. I decided to give it a try just for fun, to take a break from my obstinate WIP, and as an exercise in plotting story on a smaller scale. It took me about a month to write it. Though I have an agent, WRP didn’t require agent submission so I followed their guidelines and submitted the story. I was told I would hear back in a few months. But a friend who also submitted for this heard back quickly, so when weeks turned to months, I figured my story wouldn’t make the cut.
I was surprised to get an email from the publisher in July. They liked the story and asked if I would be willing to add something—the hero’s point of view. My word count was at the low end of the required range, so I had plenty of room. I agreed to the addition, so they sent me a contract—my first!
Since Savanna’s Gift is an eBook, I’ve had the gratification of seeing the publishing process in a short time. I worked with in-house editor—a first for me—and I have to say it was great and not at all scary. Through this, I’ve also had a chance to test all the promotional tips I’ve been gleaning over the years. So Savanna’s Gift has been a great first glimpse of life on “the other side.”
It has also been my first venture into the public eye, my way to test the “reader” waters. Since I’ve been focused strictly on pursuing novel publication, my writing has not been “out there” for public feedback. I’ve gotten feedback from friends, writing partners, contests and industry folks, but until now, I’ve never had an audience or known if people would like my work. (I haven’t been a super active blogger . . . ) The response to Savanna’s Gift has been amazing. Shocking, actually. Makes me wish all the more that my other books were out. I feel like I’ve gotten a taste of what authors feel when they release a book only to have readers devour it in a day and clamor for the next one. I don’t say this to boast, but to say my “detour” into publishing a novella has given me an extra leg to stand on as I press ahead with my full length novels. Knowing total strangers have read my work and want to read more is probably one of the most gratifying things I’ve experienced so far as a writer, maybe even more than being offered a contract. Makes me wonder why I haven’t tried publishing shorter works before.
Question: Are you a cave-dwelling novelist with no clue if you even have an audience? Have you offered freebies such as short stories on your blog or website? If not, what do you think about publishing short stories, articles or novellas as a way to begin building readership?
About Savanna’s Gift:
When Savanna gets a second chance at the love of her life, will her dream that once divided them get in the way?
Forced to return to the ski lodge where she once worked, Savanna Holt is reminded of one special Christmas and how ambition led her to make the worst mistake of her life: Leaving Luke Nelson. Stunned to discover Luke never left, but worked his way up from lift operator to manager, Savanna sees the opportunity as a gift from God. She’s determined to win Luke back. But Luke wants no reminders of his past hurt, or a relationship with the woman who put ambition before love. Can Savanna convince Luke she’s changed and her interest isn’t because of his position? And when her dream job beckons, will she sacrifice her dream for a second chance at love?
Savanna’s Gift, A Christmas Romance (eBook novella) now available for $1.00
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Camille Eide writes contemporary Christian romance and romantic women’s fiction. She lives in Oregon with her husband and is mom to three brilliant college-age kids. She’s grateful for the amazing grace of God, and either in spite of or thanks to that grace, she has a PhD in Learning Stuff the Hard Way. She’s also a church secretary, a bassist, and a passably devoted fan of classic rock, muscle cars, and Jane Austen.
Blog: Extreme Keyboarding