Sunday, 15 April 2012

Running on the Fast track

A few weeks ago Harlequin Romance/M&B Cherish & Riva announced a Fast Track competition. Aspiring authors can send in one chapter and a synopsis before the 23 April and the editorial team promise to read and respond to every entry before May 17th.
As I waited over forty weeks for the Standard R this is an amazing opportunity. One to grab with both hands, surely!
Only what to send? Summer Fling has been seen, assessed, has detailed editorial feedback (squee) and needs rewriting. Minty needs to go through the NWS before I send her in.
Does she though? The first half, and especially the first chapter, has been extensively rewritten. I should believe in my writing and send it, right? But what if the NWS have some amazing insight into that first chapter? Or synopsis? 
Or the story as a whole?
Cue several weeks of umming, ahhing and driving my CP's crazy. Again. Sorry, guys.
But if they say no - or even if they don't - that doesn't stop me sending it to the NWS for their feedback. 
So today I sent it in *bites nails*.

It's this accessibility that makes M&B so attractive to aspiring romantic novelists. That and because their name is synonymous with writing romance. To be published by them means I would really have made it in my chosen field. But with New Voices, SYTYCW, Fast tracks and Pitches - plus the promise that every submission is read and evaluated - M&B offer aspiring novelists an opportunity pretty much unparalleled amongst traditional print publishers. 
Send them three chapters and a synopsis and they will read it. 
The thing is that makes it so easy to submit. Sometimes *whistles innocently* before a book is ready. I 'may' have sent in three chapters and a synopsis for a historical that wasn't written. My excuse for this was what if they had feedback on the synopsis and wanted changes? 
Neither of my NV chapters came from finished books either. I am not alone in this.
But what finishing three books in the last eighteen months (and editing two of these) has taught me is that books change. A lot. You get to know (to love) your characters. Things occur to you on page 89 that didn't when you first plotted. Sudden insights, quirks, plot and character developments; the things that (hopefully) make your story come alive.
Fingers crossed those fast track editors agree!

2 comments:

Alexandra said...

Good luck with the fast track. Minty and Luca are fabulous, vivid characters.

Alison said...

Good luck with that - I wish I had time to enter!