Please join me in welcoming my very dear friend, the Queen of Suspense, Connie Queen as she shares her tips on the fast track to traditional publishing. Connie is a brand new author with Love Inspired Suspense! Please also leave a comment for your chance to win a super, cool custom-made coffee mug!
The Fast Track to Traditional Publishing
Do you hear that? Yeah, me too. Silence.
If you’re looking for the secret pill or magic formula to get your stories contracted quickly by a traditional publisher, I’m afraid I have no clue. But I do have some things I’ve learned along the way that I’ve found helpful and can hopefully encourage you to continue trudging along on this crazy path of becoming published authors.
First, let me thank Sharee for inviting me today. She’s a sweet friend and a great encourager of both published and unpublished authors. I love her books and am honored she asked me to be her guest.
In addition to encouragement from my family and faith in God, there are gobs of writing advice out there that has benefited me. I’m going to narrow down my list to three, and these do tend to overlap.
- Time doesn’t matter. That’s right. Don’t worry about how long you’ve been writing. Keep writing. Keep learning. Keep submitting. Unless you’ve just quit your day job and you’ve got ten hungry mouths to feed, stop rushing your journey. I only say this because we all want, me included, to receive the call or that next big contract right now. Today. Yesterday would be even better.
I’d been writing for over twenty years before I got the call. My first rejection came in 1999 by a Harlequin editor. Many of you will reach your goals much earlier than that, some later. It really is okay.
- Don’t compare apples to oranges. If we were all trying to get to Texas, Writer A in Oklahoma should arrive before Writer B from Montana. What if I had compared myself to the author who received a contract after pursuing publication for only two years? I’m married with 8 kids. Did I really sit down every day and write with kids running around the house? Nope. Sometimes months, even years, went by with little progress. It would be unfair to compare my journey to someone who is single, studies the craft, has a degree in creative writing and sits down to write three hours every single day. Yes, it’s cliché, but don’t compare apples to oranges. It just isn’t fair. It’ll leave you feeling inadequate and sometimes bitter toward those who “seem” to have an easier time.
Keep writing. Keep learning. Keep submitting.
We all start in different places and have different things going on in our lives. Day job? Kids at home? Helping elderly parents? Health issues? Going through a divorce or a major life change? Or maybe you’re an empty nester for the first time (waving my hand ecstatically) and things are calm. Some write a book every month (I know, I still can’t grasp that…) and some take years to complete a single manuscript. Some are natural-born story tellers and others must learn through trial and error. Really, it’s okay.
Just keep writing. Keep learning… Well, you get it.
- Have fun! This is the Grand Poohbah of writing. Whether your goal is to increase someone’s faith, entertain, educate or offer hope, enjoy the process. Life is short. No doubt, I will still have writing challenges and setbacks no matter how many books I publish, but I love my critique partners, a special mentor who took me under her wing, publishing professionals, and all the many people I’ve met along the way. Sharing stories with readers and other writers, really is living the dream. Don’t forget to enjoy the journey.
What about you? What motivates you to keep writing? Please share any words of wisdom that’s made a difference for you.
Share your comments below and one person will be chosen at random to win this fabulous mug!!
Connie Queen is a brand new author for Love Inspired Suspense.
When she’s not writing, she’s busy spending time with her kids and grandkids. She has a houseful of BIG LOVEABLE dogs called Great Danes. She’s been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over 33 years. A native-born Texan, she now resides in Nebraska.
Follow Connie at: conniequeenauthor.com