Welcome, Lisa. Overall, how would you rate your experience with So You think You Can Write Global 2012?
I thought it was great. I really had no idea what to expect. The camaraderie and cheerleading was awesome. The WAITING…not so awesome. But that’s just me. I’m not the patient sort. I loved the interactive aspect of the contest. It made it so fun.
We were required to upload the first chapter as our entry in SYTYCW. Is that chapter still in its original form or has it gone through more revisions?
It’s still mostly intact. I took a hard look at my LY words throughout the book and cut them down from 1395 to 800. That definitely helped with the showing and not telling aspect of my writing. Still picking and poking at the book however.
How about the rest of the book? Is it finished? Going through more revisions?
It was finished when I entered the contest. In fact, I finished book two in the series mid January. Book three has been trying to start, but I keep pushing it off because I know I’ll have a million revisions to make soon. I’ve had a half dozen readers on both books and gotten back some good suggestions.
Any thoughts on submitting your entry to another publisher or agent?
I planned to do just that. I registered for the RT CON in Kansas City back in October. My plan was to pitch, pitch, pitch! I had pitched it to two agents back in July but that was it so far. I’d written it with Harlequin in mind because I think they are the most new author friendly publisher.
How long have you been writing?
I wrote a newspaper column through high school and off and on through the years at other local newspapers but no fiction. My first attempt at mainstream fiction fizzled at 13,000 words. My second attempt at a vampire romance sputtered out around 30K. When my paranormal-loving BFF read it, she asked the question which got me on the right track: What makes this different? Uh, nothing. Same old thing. That’s when I got serious about finding a different world and beastie to write about and the Reaper Series was born.
Have you ever entered a contest like this one before?
I had entered a couple of regional contests but with no luck. I saw the SYTYCW contest last year. But this is my first novel and it wasn’t finished then. I tucked it away in the back of my mind for 2012. When I saw it was happening, I took the plunge.
What are your thoughts about the promotional aspect of the contest?
Personally, I loved the social media aspect. I like helping/promoting others. I already had a family blog, a fairly new author blog, about 300 Facebook friends on my main page and a new Facebook author page with only about 20 fans. My Twitter account was pitiful. I had a whopping 45 followers when the contest started. By the end, I had more than 300 and today more than 500. I keep working to reach out and build my tribe by building up others. I have a strong support system of friends which really came out of the woodwork. I still don’t know if I made the Top 28 by votes or wildcard. It would be interesting to find out!
If you had to do it over again, what would you do differently, if anything?
I would try to stress out a little less about it all. I had no idea how stressful it would be. It was work! But I definitely recommend it to anyone trying to break through the slush pile. My writer friends thought I was brave for entering but really…what did I have to lose? Absolutely nothing! Look at how many cool friends I made and what happened next!
What are you working on now?
Well, as fate would have it, I got THE CALL from Harlequin Digital First on January 30. You can read the long version here if you’d like here. I didn’t know it but Editor, Mary-Theresa Hussey from the SYTYCW contest forwarded my entry after I was officially rejected by Harlequin Nocturne. Mary-Theresa thought it was better suited for urban fantasy and perhaps the new Harlequin Digital First series. I’m glad I didn’t know it was under consideration, or I would have continued to fret!
I got the call, a contract and an option on book two. I was assigned a fantastic editor two weeks ago and will be receiving my first round of edits THIS WEEK! It’s very exciting! I’m so blessed to have had Mary-Theresa working behind the scenes for me. You never know who your angels are so treat everyone like they might be yours!
Where can we find you on the Web?
Dear Lord, I’m everywhere, ha!
Author blog: http://lisamedley.wordpress.com/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisamedleyauthor Twitter: @lisamedley Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/medley3/ Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/7100819-lisa-medley
Thank you for being here today, Lisa! I can't wait to read your book.