Before the Call-Disable Your Call Blocking!
I will always remember June 1, 1998 as my First Sale. But I didn't get "The Call" in the traditional sense. It all started with an email late on a Friday afternoon.
The Senior Editor for Harlequin Super Romance was trying to get a hold of me, but couldn't get through because of call blocking.
This was in the early day of phone features. The email instructed me to call in on Monday because the Senior Editor was going to be out of town for two weeks. So if I didn't get a hold of her then I wasn't going to get a hold of her for awhile.
It was the longest weekend of my life.
I tried not to get my hopes up. By that point in my career I'd received calls from both an agent and a publisher which amounted to nothing. But it was hard not to hope.
Monday arrived. I called. And got a busy signal--all day long. As the day slipped away I knew I wasn't going to last two weeks. In a last ditch effort I called the editorial assistant who had emailed me. She patched me through to the Senior Editor.
And we were cut off.
I called the assistant again. This time the Senior Editor took the call in the assistant's office and our game of phone tag ended with the sale of my first book SEAL It With A Kiss.
That phone call came 10 months after my first and only contest win. That contest win garnered me an 8 minute appointment with the editor who eventually bought my book--10 years and 5 books later I can hardly believe how much time has passed.
The Marine's Baby is in stores today and in a way it's never gotten any easier than that first missed phone call.
But wishing I knew then what I know now is kind of like wishing for a 20 year old body to go with this 40 year old brain. With experience comes wisdom. And someday I'm going to be wiser. But for now here's my wish list...
...I wish I had focused on my writing goals more, instead of on the broader goal of getting published.
...I wish I had entered more contests and submitted more manuscripts--full manuscripts.
And here's the biggie
... I wish I had made it less about the rules and more about the writing.
Write something today!
Go ahead and Enlist! Vistit Rogenna at http://www.rogennabrewer.com/
Today Rogenna is giving away a copy of The Marine's Baby to one lucky commenter. Please leave a method of contact.
When an aptitude test labeled her suited for librarian or clergy, Rogenna joined the Navy. It was off to bootcamp, followed by her first duty station, NAS Midway Island. She started in the CO's office and gravitated toward the Chaplain's where duties included operating the base library.
Rogenna met and married her sailor while serving her country. "The best part was that brief period of time when I outranked him." After receiving an Honorable Discharge she continued to serve as a Navy Wife and admits to being jealous of her husband's travels. "There's a reason for the slogan; Navy Wife, the toughest job in the Navy. It's like being a single parent--at least part of the time. Jeff's been to seventeen countries and was there for the filming of two major motion pictures aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise CVN65 (TOP GUN and HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER). We have three boys, one for each deployment."
With their Navy days behind them, the family currently resides in Colorado where Rogenna grew up. Before settling in to writing, she was a bookseller and a reviewer for several years. "The one constant has been the need to surround myself with people and books. I always wanted to be a writer/adventurer, but that aptitude test had great insight into my personality. And now I go wherever I want, whenever I want, through my writing."