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Update on My Proposal

Most of you know I wrote a book proposal earlier in the summer and that my agent sent it "out there" into the publishing world. More specifically, she gave my proposal to one particular publisher as an "exclusive."

The term exclusive is new to me (as is most of this process into publication!). When an agent decides to give an exclusive it means she sends the book proposal to only one publisher at a time giving them a definitive time frame for deciding on the book. Although not frequently done, my agent decided to try an exclusive in a strategic effort to pair me with the best possible publisher for my books and for me as an author.

Last time I updated you, the editor liked my proposal and took it to the Editorial Committee. The Editorial Committee gave my proposal the thumbs up and passed it on to the Publishing Board. You may recall this is the group of people who brutally discuss proposals and ultimately decide whether to offer a writer a contract or pass on the project.

You may also remember that I shared some of the potential problems with my proposal having to do with the time periods and settings of my historicals. As a matter of fact, my agent, Rachelle Gardner, did a post not too long ago called Writing the Break-In Novel, and she alluded to my proposal. If you missed it, you can read it here.

In summary, I've learned that I need to rethink my strategy. As a first time author, trying to break in and build a readership, I have to understand what readers like the most and start with that. In other words I have to consciously consider what time periods and settings are most popular, and then work within those parameters to a degree.

Does that mean that I have to write something I don't like or that I'm not passionate about? Absolutely not. I love writing. I'll find another story that falls within the boundaries. In fact, I already have too many ideas and plots whirring through my head. And now I have the problem of trying to sort out which story to write next.

So what happened to my book proposal? Well, it finally made it to Pub Board. And after debating every possible angle of my proposal, the board was able to come to a decision. Will they offer me a contract or send me on my way?

Unfortunately, I'm not at liberty to divulge any information just yet. But, let's just say, it's not all doom and gloom!

More in the next post about writing a break-in novel. For today, I'd love to hear your updates! What's happening in your writing world? Any completions? Queries? Requests? Rejections? Acceptances? Please share!

62 comments:

  1. I'm praying for you, Jody, and those books of yours. I wish you could DIVULGE information though!! Oh, how I wish you could. You're keeping me in such suspense.

    Now, I have to go back and read your last weeks posts to catch up.

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  2. Jody, my Google Reader or Blogger dashboard isn't working again. Frustrating!

    I'm still praying for you as well, Jody. Sounds like you're getting somewhere with the process, so that's good news, right?

    Where I am? I'm about 55,000 words into my novel. I'm working through some issues that my characters created without my consent.

    Happy Monday!

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  3. I think some kind of congratulations is in order, or at least yeah, you're on the right track. :O)

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  4. WOOHOO!!! Can't wait to hear the FULL news!

    What's happening in my writing world? About a month or so ago I had a request for a full which made me VERY excited... but now I wait. Which I'm TOTALLY okay with. (waiting is better than a no, I tell myself!) But with ACFW conference coming up, I'm getting nervous, wishing I could get an answer back before that so I'd know how to concentrate my efforts. But God's timing is PERFECT and I'm, surprisingly, not worried about it.

    I did hit my 1/2 mark on my newest book! I'm SO anxious to finish, I'm hoping I can get the ball moving and pound out the last 35k words easily. We'll see:-)

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  5. Oh you sneaky woman!!!! I can't wait until you CAN divulgue. What an exciting time for you! :-)

    Your post didn't show up in my dashboard either. I just know you post today so I had to come find it. I hope blogger gets fixed...grrr.

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  6. OOH! I can't wait to hear the news!

    I really haven't been able to write the past few weeks, so I've just been collecting ideas for my newest story. I think I'm really close to getting it all! And that's exciting, because then I can start writing!

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  7. Edge of my seat now.....

    No news here. I have another person critiquing my MS and I kinda have some new ideas for it.

    But other than that...not much!

    I hope to be congratulating you soon!!

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  8. This all sounds so exciting! I've just found your blog through Julie Gillies. It's lovely and encouraging and I'm sure I'll be back.

    Sonya Lee

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  9. Congrats on all your success!!! That's great...you're almost there, it sounds like.

    I'm not nearly as close as you are. I'm still trying to land an agent.

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  10. Oh, Jody, I'm so excited for you. I'll keep my fingers crossed that your news is good news. It is such a wonderful thing that you found a good agent and have moved this far along towards publishing.

    I was unable to find an agent (after almost two years), so I self-published with a really good company. I'm happy with the result. I'm now balancing marketing that book with beginning some new writing projects. Having a bit of trouble getting them off and running, but I'm confident I'll get there.

    Can't wait to hear your news.
    Karen

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  11. Congrats on being as far along in this journey as you are. And here's hoping you can share the rest of the news soon.

    As for me, I'm polishing up my WIP (the Genesis final) and preparing to pitch it at the ACFW conference. Post-conference, I'll be diving headlong into a new book (applying everything I learned in Denver) and going on an agent hunt.

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  12. I'm glad to hear it's not all doom and gloom. I admire you for coming as far as you have, and for sharing the journey with all of us.

    And blogger is being difficult again. I only have a handful of blogs showing up in my dashboard. It's crazy!

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  13. Okay, that's wild, I also asked for writing-world updates in my blog this morning!

    I'm still waiting for responses from the agents who are holding onto my partials/fulls! Absolutely dead silence except for an agent or two writing to say "sorry for the wait, things are crazy here, I'll get to you eventually, I promise."

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  14. Hi Jody! Glad to hear that things are still moving forward with your proposal. Slowly, but surely.

    In my writing world, I'm almost finished with my query writing. I've got one more revision to do and I think it will be about as perfect as I can get it.

    Also, I'm well into a new story which is throwing me curves, taking me on wild twists and turns, and magically producing characters I had no intention of including! Strange, but true :)

    Happy Monday,
    Jen

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  15. I hope it's good news!!!

    I'm still sending out queries and praying that the Lord leads me to the right agent. :-)

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  16. Waiting.

    Sounds like things are going smoothly for you. May God continue to bless your journey.

    ~ Wendy

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  17. Hmmm... sounds like you're on the edge of some great success. I've got my fingers crossed for you, along with a prayer. Update us as soon as you can!

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  18. How very exciting! I look forward to hearing your news!

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  19. You have me on the edge of my seat!!! I was ready to scream with joy for you (and possibly wake all four kids and the two friends they have spending the night lol, but it would have been so worth it). I am praying for you dear friend!!! Exciting times!

    I just sent out a proposal myself yesterday. It was filed with blood sweat and tears (as you know) Mine went to my dream agent so I wouldn't mind a prayer or two myself ;)

    I'm so thrilled for you!

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  20. Jody,
    Wow! This entire process is not for the faint of heart. I've got butterflies just thinking about what you're going through!

    Thank you for sharing your journey with us, and for teaching us along the way!

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  21. Ooooooh! I can't wait for an update!

    I have an opening in my critique group, so I've posted another contest on my blog. If you know anyone who writes romance or adult fiction with romantic elements, sent them my way. Sanks.

    Lynnette Labelle
    http://lynnettelabelle.blogspot.com

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  22. Writing "for the market" can often be a very frustrating - and limiting - experience. I like what you pointed out here about how you can both write for the market's needs *and* pursue what you're passionate about. Sometimes it's just a matter of writing and writing until you hit the right story at the right time.

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  23. Oh you tease! Hope it's full steam ahead.

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  24. I'm holding my breath with anticipated excitement about your book being published. I'm getting the confetti, horns and parade ready for the big celebration. Hope the good news comes soon or I'm going to turn blue!!! LOL!

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  25. Oh, not being able to tell is very good news indeed :)

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  26. Well, I'm hopeful for you, Jody!

    Nothing new to report on my WIP. :)

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  27. My mother always says, "No news is good news". But it seems you have news, and some of it may be good, you just can't tell us. :(

    I read Rachelle's post last week. It's message is pinging around in my head as I continue working on my wip.

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  28. Congrats on your evident success so far. Since you're not able to spill the beans yet, I will keep my fingers crossed for you. Good luck and we all look forward to more good news soon.

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  29. Praying for good news on your book! How exciting!! And I agree that we should be aware of the market.

    My news? I'm finished with revisions--yahoo!!

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  30. I can't believe you've left us hanging like this, Jody! How can I bribe you? Would chocolate work? ;)

    Actually, it's exciting to hear how far you've gotten, and I hope and pray that your news is all good!

    Well, I met with 3 publishers at She Speaks. The first one seemed interested and took my proposal with her, the second one seemed VERY interested and also took my proposal with her, and the last one practically yawned in my face (I was her last appt. of the entire conference...at least I HOPE that's why she seemed distracted), but gave me her card (?)and asked me to e-mail my proposal.

    I almost didn't bother with the last one, but decided to send it anyway. I've already received a "no thank you" from her...no surprise. But still, a disappointment. I'm sure it will be some time before I hear back from the other two publishers.

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  31. ARGH! You left us hanging!

    At the moment, I'm knee deep in edits and story proposals.

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  32. Why you little stinker! That's no fair! We are your best buds, and this is how you treat us? LOL!

    It looks like party time is upon us, though, right?

    I have some great news of my own, which will appear on my blog Wednesday...

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  33. I would love to know the outcome, too bad you can not divulge. It is encouraging to see someone making progress!
    My daughter's friend asked her if I was in aspiring author. My daughter answered, "More like a perspiring author!" Which turns out to be an accurate account of my position at the moment.

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  34. Jody, you sure know how to end a post with a hook. I can't wait to hear more. And I so hope it's BIG news.

    I read the post you mentioned on Rachelle's blog when it first appeared. Two lines jumped out at me: "I have one client who has two completed novels that are simply amazing. They showcase her awesome talent like nobody's business . . ." At the time I didn't know that incredible writer was you. Mega congratulations!

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  35. I bet they're arguing over a publishing date right now and that's why you can't say anything. ^^

    I've gotten as far as posting up chapter 9 of Uninvoked. I think that's pretty good. ^^

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  36. Oh, you're such a tease! Hopefully, you'll soon tell us all what happened! Hoping for the best...

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  37. What a cliffhanger, lol. :) Hope all went well for you!

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  38. Jody,
    Having been where you currently find yourself, I can understand the angst you're experiencing. Meanwhile, possess your soul with patience and let the process work while you start on your next novel.

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  39. Hi Jody,
    Just wanted to let you know to check my blog on Wednesday - there is an award coming your way.
    Blessings,
    karen

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  40. I can't wait to hear!! And thank you again, Jodi, for being so good to all of us and sharing this process. I'm learning so much!
    As to where I am, you already know I'm sending out the full tomorrow and also plan on sending a query to the editor again at LI with a different book and pitch.
    Hope to finish the edits on my third book and get that underway and out there:)

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  41. Sounds like we're in for some good news... Love following along with you. Thanks for sharing.

    I'm still writing! Any progress is progress.

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  42. I've been stuck on the rewrite of chapter 2 of my WIP for a couple of months now. But just this weekend, I made a breakthrough and now I'm going full speed ahead! I'm hoping it will be ready for querying by the end of the year.

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  43. This is so much fun to follow you along your journey, Jody!! Can't wait to find out what happens next!

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  44. I am not working on anything yet. I wish you the very best of luck. I would love to read your book.

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  45. Hi Jody -

    I saw Rachelle's post and wondered if she was referring to you. Thanks for satisfying my curiosity. :)

    As far as my writing, an editor accepted one of my devotionals. The book is another story. I'm still praying about how to proceed.

    Blessings,
    Susan

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  46. Oh my word - just reading about this selection process is giving me ulcers!!

    Good luck!

    I hope to be in your shoes some day but also dread it.

    Right now my writing in just not happening - soon.

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  47. oh how exciting! I hope there is great news to share soon Jody :)I will be thinking of you.

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  48. Hmm! You've definitely mastered the art of writing the hook! I'm praying for you and can't wait to hear more on your journey.

    On my own progress, I've done a lot of agent research lately and I'm preparing to query an agent that I think would be a good fit for me.

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  49. Tell me they said yes, yes, yes!!!

    I'm on pins and needles and it isn't even my manuscript!

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  50. Hi Jody,
    Ooooo, can't wait for the update! I can't tell you enough how much I enjoy reading Rachelle's blog. I tweet about her posts regularly now. Would love to hear more about how you found her and pitched her to take you on as a client.
    GOOD LUCK!
    Stephanie

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  51. Ohhh, I love a good mystery! Congrats on all of your progress, and best wishes on the rest of the journey! (I'm SO thankful you are blogging about it all!)

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  52. Fingers crossed and prayers said for you, Jody. You make a great point about writing for an audience rather than writing for yourself. That's something very important to remember.

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  53. Oh, I can't wait to hear what happened with your book - I am keeping my fingers crossed for you!

    As for me, I'm still waiting to hear back on multiple queries and partials.

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  54. I'm thinking about reading one of my stories and possibly putting them on my blog.

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  55. Jodi, if you get a chance, hop on over to Pimp My Novel (blog). The topic at hand is historical fiction (just thought you'd be interested).

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  56. Waiting on agents with partials/fulls. How many times can I read the same web blurbs on these people and except some new bit of insight? Thousands of times, evidentally!

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  57. I am wishing you luck! I hope you get a nice contract! *smiling*

    (I'm working on book2- I published with a independent press)

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  58. "... it's not all doom and gloom!" Ah, keeping us in suspense. That's good.

    I should get the author copy of my book in 10 days.

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  59. Rejoicing with you, and can hardly wait to hear more.
    Delighted to find you tonight.

    Blessings from Costa Rica,
    Sarah Dawn

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  60. I'm in the large group of people waiting for your full report! I hope everything is going well for you. I did wonder if your agent's post was referring to you. :)

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  61. Jody, I'm giving you an award on my blog tomorrow! (you neither have to play along or post it lol!)

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