First Publishing Contract Offered!

I was offered my first contract last week. YAYYY! Then I turned it down because I didn’t feel like it’d be a good fit… NOOOO!

So, that kind of sucks.

But my ego is happily boosted.

It was a hard choice, after all I’ve been querying publishers and agents for a couple months now and finally got a hit. But I’m also confident that it was the correct choice.

As for an update on the sequel…. Things are going well. Extremely well. Except I accidentally erased about a weeks worth of writing last weekend. That was a terrible moment of realization… Luckily, I periodically email myself a back up copy and had done that recently. Once I dusted that file off, I realized I only lost a couple days worth of writing. (So always make sure to backup your writing folks.)

I’d guess I’m about half way finished. There’s a lot more to flesh out, then the 60-70 or whatever complete edits to make my sentences not suck. I’m telling ya, I can write the daylights out of action scenes, but dialogue and description? Ugh. That’s like doing chores, necessary but not fun.

I know all those edits sounds like a lot. And I know that Heinlein’s Rules for Writers says that you must refrain from editing, except to editorial order… but he hasn’t read my rough drafts. And really, I consider it more of a refiners pass to make it better. Why should I stop at mediocre writing? I’d rather do the hard time and make it my best possible work.

As an aside, I did kill my little brother off in one of the more pivotal chapters of the books… because red shirting people you know is fun. (That’s a Star Trek reference, all the main crew wear different colors, but all the extras who get killed off are wearing red shirts.)

1885, an excellent year.

Why did I choose 1885 for my Epic Story Of Lost World Adventure Awesomeness?

Well, there was a lot of cool stuff going on.

Such as, the roller coaster was patented. The Irish tried to blow up the Tower of London with dynamite. John Babbacombe Lee was hung three times and didn’t die. (The English declared it ‘Divine Intervention’, and eventually released him. This is like Game of Thrones ‘Trial by Combat’… except it was more like ‘Trial by Hangin”) The Statue of Liberty arrives in New York and the Rabies Vaccine is a success. (Yay!)

None of that matters a single bit in regards to the book. But it’s neat to know.

BUT, the BONE WARS was nearing an end. That was when a pair of rival archeologists tried to destroy each other while discovering new species of dinosaurs in the American West. Eventually they ruined each other socially and financially. It’s kind of a shame they didn’t just resort to a duel though… Anyways. This is just too awesome of a historical event to not include, and some of the ground work is already laid in the first book.

There was also the Temperance Movement to ‘Ban All Fun Activities by Men’…

But most importantly, 1885 also pushed us into the wonderful world of smokeless gun powder and metallic cartridges while black powder was still being used to good effect.  John Moses Browning was about to reveal his famous 1886 Winchester, and one of his earliest inventions, the 1885 High Wall had just been put into production.

(Sadly, we’re still over a decade away from the pump action Winchester Model 1897 Shotgun that would eventually be used in every military conflict up to Vietnam. Could you imagine how cool one of these would be against apes and dinosaurs? -stab- KABOOM!)

WncsterCatMod97trench

Man… the things I want to write about…

Anyways…

Did I mention that the military was still using single shot Springfields? (Sucks to be you guys when faced with an army of numerically, and physically, superior apes with a prowess for soaking up bullets. That makes for great battle scenes.)

There were also a lot of famous characters still alive, or who’d recently deceased.

Wyatt Earp was 37 years old. The shoot out at the OK corral took place four years prior. Doc Holliday was still alive and up to no good in his flamboyant style. Buffalo Bill Cody, Annie Oakley, and Theodore Roosevelt were all running around at the same time as the villainous likes of John Wesley Hardin, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Even Laura Ingalls Wilder, Sitting Bull, and Jeremiah Johnson were this side of the dirt.

1885 was a heckuva year to be alive.

Oh, and the very first edition of ‘Good Housekeeping’ was published. Which is probably why the Temperance Movement took off…

 

Deep breath… and…. -submit for publishing-

I think I’ve gotten enough feedback to take the leap for rejection or publication.

There are still a lot of copies floating around out there, and I just sent another one out this morning. I’ll keep updating my manuscript as I get feedback, but at some point you’ve got to poop or get off the pot.

I finished the novel almost six weeks ago, and the feedback I’ve gotten since has been overwhelmingly positive. I’m confident enough that I’ve created something great and entertaining, and now I want to get it into print. Besides, I’m currently deep into writing the sequel, and I’ve at least three more books planned for the series. (Including a couple spin-off characters/series.)

But this is going to be a long wait.

Submitting an unrequested/unagented manuscript means I go into the publishers Slush Pile. Which means they will give it a glance when they get a chance. (Expect 9-12 months!)

THEN, if it passes their muster, it goes into editing/rewriting. After that, it goes into rotation for printing. Which could be another year before seeing the light of a bookstore/amazon shelf.

So all that kind of stinks. But it is what it is. I’ve a lot of writing planned in the meantime. Including a story about Marines in WWII stranded on a pacific island with some hostile Japanese POW’s and Sea Monsters. (I just want to write about using a flame thrower on a sea monster… and since 95% of the ocean is unexplored, I can make a LOT of stuff up!)

For those of you who’ve read this book, you’re more than welcome to read the sequel once it’s completed. 🙂

Honestly, I’m extremely confident this book will see print. It’s good. Real good. I’ve enough strangers telling me that now to not have any doubts. And seriously, who doesn’t love cowboys, apes, and dinosaurs?

But I’m also a bit egotistical. So we’ll see how it all pans out.

As for my first choice to submit to?

Baen.

They’ve a great reputation for helping new authors build a reader base. And they don’t particularly care what your personal religious/political opinions are. And since I’m the sort who won’t stop saying what I believe, I think I’d do well with them.

Besides, they’re located in Wake Forest, NC. Just a few hours down the road. 🙂

So…

Baensubmit

Here we go….