bits publishing

My First Novel Sale: One Month In

80’s hackers, punk mages, &fey magic. Coder/wizard fights to get her bro back, finds dangerous secret. #PitMad 

In September, I posted this tweet without much expectation that anyone would take interest. But I had been diligently knocking my head against the querying process for six months by this point, and the Pitch Madness twitter event seemed like it would be worth a shot.

I received a manuscript request from, of all places, Harlequin. Turned out they had just started up a new digital program. and were in the market for some sci-fi and fantasy. And not just SFF romance, either. Regular old SFF.


Five months later I received a call from the editor. She dug it. She wanted to send me a contract.


And thus began the process. We’re through the first round of edits now, and there are a few items I want to remember, which I shall now list:

  • Working in a professional capacity with someone who both a) believes in the concept and b) has solid ideas on how to make this baby purr is magnificent.
  • I remembered maybe one in five words from that initial phone call.
  • All that cool stuff you came up with as you were writing the thing? Make sure it’s all in the first part of the book.
  • I really can’t believe I sent out a manuscript with that many “said”s in it.
  • Wendig is right: Track Changes is, indeed, your best friend.
  • Holding a launch party on Facebook is now a thing.
  • Finding a “Hold my Orange Crush, but don’t drink it” commercial online is a challenge.
  • I wrote the entire book without saying what the main character’s hair color is.

So far, it’s fun and terrifying and challenging. If you need me, I’ll be staring into space and scrawling notes on any scraps of paper nearby.

3 replies on “My First Novel Sale: One Month In”

I’m working with Dana Hopkins. I have not heard anything final on schedule yet — you?

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