September 19, 2017
Why I’m Writing This Path to Pub Blog
The Subway Girls won’t be published until next summer, but because there are so many exciting things happening, I’ve decided to document them. For three reasons. First, I want a record of this experience for myself because I have a terrible memory so documenting all of the steps will allow me to reflect and remember. Second, I have read dozens of posts like this from other authors and perhaps, my experiences will help another first-timer who has no idea what to expect. Third, many of my readers (and my mom) tell me they like the behind-the-scenes accounts, and well, sharing is caring.
(In case you missed it: Chapter One)
Still more recap from the past year…
On Submission (Part 2)
I was on spring break with my family mid-March when I got an email from my agent, Carly, that said (direct quote): “** CALL ME!! ** :)” I knew—hoped—that could only mean one thing, so I took a deep breath and called her. She relayed the news that St. Martin’s Press (St. Martin’s Press!!!!!) was offering me a two-book deal for THE SUBWAY GIRLS and my next as-of-yet-unwritten novel. I am still speechless. My husband and I celebrated that night by going out and toasting with our favorite drink: a Su Casa, which is Casamigos tequila, grapefruit juice, soda, and lime. I felt like a million bucks. And my boys celebrated by not making fun of me while I jumped up and down and screamed my head off.
Criticize the cliche all you want, but it was a dream come true to get a deal with a publisher, and, especially with St. Martin’s Press. I couldn’t believe it was all finally happening for me. Having gone from self-published to small-house published to now, a two-book deal with a Macmillan imprint—the feeling was indescribable.
We agreed to a deal (things like rights, royalties, advance amount, etc.) and got the ball rolling on contracts. A couple weeks later, I met my new St. Martin’s Press editor, Alicia Clancy, for lunch in NYC near the St. Martin’s office, which is in the Flatiron Building. At that lunch, besides getting to know each other, we discussed her editorial notes, the novel that would come after THE SUBWAY GIRLS, cover design, and the production process.
Publisher’s Weekly, for those who don’t know, is a trade publication that, among other things, announces book deals. I subscribe to their daily email “Today’s Deals from Publisher’s Marketplace.” Before I had my deal, I would read it with feelings that vacillated between jealousy and happiness for other authors. Being honest. And each time I read it, I imagined what it would be like to see my book deal listed. Again, positive thinking. Then, on Friday, March 31, 2017, this landed in my inbox at 9:12 am and made my freaking day:
In Chapter One, I mentioned that the original title of my novel was MISS SUBWAYS, which is the actual name of the contest that the novel is based on. But, we had to change it because David Duchovny (yep, Agent Mulder) had recently sold a book to Farrar, Straus and Giroux (along with St. Martin’s, a Macmillan imprint) entitled MISS SUBWAYS. It’s supposed to come out Spring ’18. That meant, my novel needed a new title. My editor Alicia sent me a list of potential ideas. THE SUBWAY GIRLS was the hands-down winner. And here we are.
After several rounds of developmental and copy edits, St. Martin’s printed “bound manuscripts” that could be sent to early readers for blurbs. It was very exciting (I know I keep writing how excited I was at every step, but it was and is true. Every step is ridiculously exciting.) to hold that in my hands and to see the St. Martin’s logo on the front. And then…. the blurbs 🙂
Stay tuned for Chapter Three…