Thanks for having me on The Five Scribes today. It’s awesome to be here and I can’t wait to see the “cute” picture Donnell says she has of me. I’ll list some contests at the end...so keep reading.
Donnell asked if I wanted to talk about receiving “THE Call.” I’ve been asked several times how it compared to winning the RWA Golden Heart®. Each--at the time--caused me to soar higher than I’ve ever been before in my writing career. Everything you can imagine...well, it’s better. My road to publication this year has been fast & furious. I got The Call on November 12th and my book is now available. But that’s not the entire journey.
Fellow chaptermate and friend, Catherine Spangler, has constantly reminded me this past year that I worked long and hard for this whirlwind trip. Over ten years of preparation. Some people call me an inspiration or say that I’ve given them hope. I just call myself stubborn.
In 1997 my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He died before his 62nd birthday. He worked very hard his entire life--one of the smartest men I’ve ever known, a self-educated man who read encyclopedias. He’d just found a wealth of friends and was happy to start slowing down and having fun. Driving back from one of our visits with my father, my husband told me that I was a writer. “Life is too short and we never know how long we’ll be here.” He didn’t want me to wait to pursue my dream of publication. We decided together that I’d stay home with our kids, I’d volunteer...I’d write.
So in 1999 I joined RWA, getting involved with local chapters in 2000. I volunteered, I learned, I soaked up everything anyone would let me overhear. And here’s the part of the story most people don’t remember. My manuscripts were requested and asked for revisions several times. I was close...so close I could... Well, you know. Not once, but several times I’d send revisions before an assistant editor moved on (changed lines, publisher, even fired). I had an agent. I was a 2004 GH finalist.
I didn’t sell.
I received multiple rejections every year. I lost several of my critique partners and association friends--many had stopped writing and drifted away. I lost heart and couldn’t finish a manuscript. Then I lost my agent. (She couldn’t represent someone who didn’t have anything to submit.)
I took two years off from writing with a good reason. We had a foster daughter and she and my youngest both graduated (’07 & ’08). I deliberately didn’t try to write. I volunteered, stayed active in my local chapters. I’d found a best friend, Amy Atwell, in 2004. She encouraged me, kept prodding me to write something new. I made a friend with Christie Craig who had been trying to publish again for much longer then me. Her encouragement never ceased. And then a revelation--Amy and I knew what was wrong with my finished work See Jane Run.
Many have heard that I claimed 2009 as my year. Well...it was MY TIME. I was determined to do everything in my power to sell. I put my revision cap on and wrote a column for my chapter newsletter, documenting what I did each month on my road to publication. From January to December, I never let my doubting mind have control. It was MY YEAR.
A new journey is beginning for me. My “sophomore” book has been written, sold, and scheduled for a February 2011 release. .38 Caliber Cover-Up is my second book for Harlequin Intrigue®. I have a fantastic editor, a wonderful agent who’s interested in my career, and great critique partners. My family’s so excited they’re busting with pride.
And I have the support of everyone in RWA that taught me, mentored me, and helped me along this long road. Honest truth, cross my heart...I wouldn’t have gotten here if I hadn’t been encouraged and nurtured along the way. A very sincere thank you.
CONTESTS: The details for my contests are on my website. Hold Up the Cover will run the entire month HCH is on bookshelves--I have several prizes to be drawn for those sending me a picture of themselves with the cover (and signing up for my newsletter). And there’s one more contest for debut week: I’m blog hopping and if you leave five comments on five blogs this week, then send me an email, you’ll be entered in a drawing for more books and prizes. (You can even go back to blogs from 9-13 and 9-14.)
Visit her website www.AngiMorgan.com or become a friend on Facebook.
And here's Angi's QUESTION FOR YOU: How long have you been striving to reach a goal...any goal? What kept you going?