After a month of holding my tongue, I can finally announce I signed a multi-book deal with Shadow Spark Publishing for my Martyr’s Vow series! The first book, Accursed Son, (which I’ve been querying, like, forever) will be published in December 2022.
Readers of this blog know that Accursed Son was my MA in Writing project, one I started writing three years ago. After dozens of rewrites, countless edits, and over 60 rejections, this scrappy little tale found a home.
I still can’t believe this journey to publication is nearly at an end.
To be honest, I thought this day would never come. There’ve been so many rejections from both agents and small publishers. I unsuccessfully pitched this book to #PitMad, #PitDark, and #RevPit. Each time I received zero likes from agents or editors. Nobody seemed interested in my weird urban fantasy filled with Armenian mythology, magic, and found families.
I was razor’s edge close to giving up and abandoning the manuscript, despite years of hard work.
Fortunately, that didn’t happen. I persevered and sent query after query to multiple literary agents and publishers. I endured the stinging rejections. The agonizing months of feeling insignificant. The pressure to succeed as a writer while avoiding sliding into obscurity.
Quitting never was an option. I couldn’t leave Armand and Vonnie and Roupen. I couldn’t condemn them to a dead Word file on my hard drive. Their tale was too important. Plus, I believed in these imaginary people I created. What kind of writer would I be if I tossed these innocent word-babies into the trash bin?
I guess what I’m saying is don’t give up.
Even if every instinct in your body tells you to, even if doing so is the easy way out and a clear path to sanity, don’t quit.
Stay fighting. Believe in your stories.
Writers are mad. Barking mad. It takes a special barking mad writer to constantly edit their work and reshape it for years and never abandon it. Call it tenacity or grit or perseverance, but if you’ve got that, each criticism or rejection is one step closer to success.
For every agent’s form rejection, every “it’s not the right fit for me at this time” or “I’m not interested” there’s at least one publisher or agent curious enough to take a gander at your manuscript.
I’d like to thank Jessica Moon, Mandy Russell, and Dan Fitzgerald at Shadow Spark Publishing for their curiosity regarding Accursed Son. I’m glad they enjoyed my book and allowed me the opportunity to tell Armand’s story. I’m also grateful for the encouragement people have given me along the way. Every beta reader, editor, professor, and fellow writer who read and commented on the manuscript helped me during this journey.
Thanks for believing in my work, fam. You made me one happy scribe.
Read more about the announcement from Shadow Spark Publishing here.