Thursday, January 18, 2007


Sold both Anneka and Jessamyn in a two-book deal to Berkley.

This is so cool.

Superagent has been unceasingly supportive.
"It takes a while."
Well ... yes.
I have not gone mad.

In case there is someone in the outer reaches of Alaska who hasn't heard me mewling about this ...

Once upon a time, I got myself an agent and she began the submission process for ANNEKA.

While she was doing this, I'd keep writing on the next ms -- JESSAMYN -- and try not to think about the business of selling.

I worried about ANNEKA's inherent marketing problems,
(it's set in France, for instance, and its got that plot twist,)
and whether it would be publishable at all. So I figgered I'd need to finish and sell JESSAMYN and maybe another historical Romance ms before I could bring ANNEKA back into play.

Then I polished ANNEKA, last time polish, and Superagent sent it out on December 16, to Berkley.

Christmas intervenes.*

January 11, I'm typing away in the hallowed halls of Panera, where I can work, as opposed to being at home where I keep doing things like walking the dog or washing the floor in the kitchen.

Phone call. Could I pick up orange juice on the way home? Oh. And the agent called and left a message on the answering machine. She asked if you'd call her back.

So I headed home to call her back.

And I got better than I'd hoped for, by golly.
Not just ANNEKA sold.
The 'next book' sold. Not even on proposal. Just .... sold.


We discussed stuff like the dates I would have to turn in revisions of ANNEKA, when the synopsis and three chapters for JESSAMYN would be due, when the completed ms of JESSAMYN could be ready.
(Oh my.)

The agent wanted dates I would be happy with that more or less matched what the publisher was likely to need.

I think agents must lead difficult lives.

We did a quick tour of advances and royalties. Advances are more and more coming to be paid in three parts. Less advance money comes up front on acceptance.

le sigh

Then she turned her charger and headed back into the fray, off to finish the negotiation, my favor streaming in the wind behind her.

Yesterday, I got a call from Superagent saying the deal is done. It'll be a while before the contract arrives, but basically, it's done.

The revision process begins.

(Exaltation and fear.)

-- I have to do revisions on ANNEKA.
-- Write a synopsis for JESSAMYN.
-- Finish the bloody JESSAMYN ms.
-- And I need titles for ANNEKA and JESSAMYN.

If I could think up titles for manuscripts I wouldn't calling them after the female protagonist.


* Which is why I wonder about this received wisdom of not submitting over the Christmas Season. Maybe everyone refrains from submitting and that means it's a good time ...


  1. Cat D4:01 PM

    Jo --

    I knew you'd do it.
    I'm thrilled for you and look forward to picking up your books.


  2. Thank you Cat.

    I'm still stunned.


    I thought I'd peruse some sites while sipping my coffee and procrastinating work (day work, not writing) and am glad I did... and glad I scrolled down a bit or I'd have missed this.

    You are a phenonmenal writer, Jo, and if you couldn't sell, who could? But you did, and yeah! I look forward to reading your books. Do keep us wannabe's posted as to when we can buy your books.

    Cathy, who will now try rolling around in your Phoenix dust.

  4. Anonymous7:36 AM


    Lurker de-lurking to send you a (late, but huge) whoopdeedoop!

    Found you by way of your very helpful posts on the books & writers community. I just wanted to let you know you have a fan.

    This is probably going to come off as cheesy, but your blog has been a real inspiration. It's so wonderful to see the hard work paying off (and the cat updates always have me smiling).

    Jumping up and down for you!

  5. You guys are so kind.

    I find this a bit scary, frankly. Now I have to finish writing Jessamyn.

    I'm doing Elizabeth Bear's Novel-in-90 that calls for 750 words a day. Surprisingly difficult to keep this up over the long run.

    That's the point, I guess.