I read a 2007 post by Rick Riordan, about when people ask what it feels like to be “an overnight success.” It took him nearly ten years to reach his “overnight success.” His story parallels that of so many writers I know or have read about. I don’t think people realize oftentimes just how hard these overnight successes had to struggle before they “made it.”
Since my book deal was announced, I’ve had people ask me about my journey. When people hear that Treasured Lies was the first book I ever wrote, I think they sometimes assume I didn’t have to struggle much. After all, I sold my first novel!
The very first draft of Treasured Lies was finished about five years ago. Since then, it has been completely rewritten at least three times, and I mean COMPLETLEY, with countless revisions of those rewrites in between. And I wrote other books between those TL rewrites. I queried that poor baby over 200 times (and then I stopped counting). I got many requests, some revise/resubs, and lots of “I love it, buts" :)
I’ve started other projects that I’ve abandoned. But this one I just couldn’t leave alone. I believed in it too much. So every so often, I’d pull it out of its virtual drawer and start all over again. So while it might technically be the first book I wrote, if you count up all the rewrites and books in between, it’s at least book number 5 or 6 :)
I’m glad I had a hard road of it, because now I can truly appreciate the success I've earned. And I know, and accept, that there is another hard road ahead. More importantly, I know I can handle the speed bumps that are going to come my way. Getting published is just one more step up. It's a good step, a very very good step that makes me smile whenever I think of it :) But I know there are still some rough times ahead, and probably always will be. And it's good to know that I can deal with all the ups and downs that will come with the journey to true success.
Rick Riordan says all this so much better than I am doing here :) Be sure to read his article. It’s inspiring – and wonderful to know that even the big names out there had to go through the same things I am :)