Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Season of Fresh Starts and New Beginnings: Yuck! by Margo Hoornstra


We’re still in January, first month of the New Year 2016. The season of fresh starts. New beginnings. Yada, yada, yada

Whatever…..                                                        

Sorry, but I’m just not feeling it.
 

Because…..
In 2009, my first book was published, then another and another and another. I was on a roll, Baby! Submit, acceptance, publication; submit, acceptance, publication; submit, acceptance, publication – right through 2014. Six straight years of absolute bliss. Life doesn’t get any better! Does it? Onward and upward, as they say! I have arrived!
Not necessarily…..

In 2015, my publication fortune changed. Many others have been there before. The romance line I wrote for closed and my fabulous editor moved on. Deflated but not defeated, I moved on too. Armed with another spectacular concept – in my mind if no one else’s – I made the rounds in search of a new publisher. I decided to try the agent route first, and my 2015 went something like this. Submit – no thank you; submit – not right for us; submit – doesn’t excite; submit – maybe, let me see more…uh, no thanks; submit – well maybe, send the full, please then…you're a talented writer, the premise intrigues me, but I'll pass.


For an entire twelve months.

So, why **heavy sigh** don’t I **heavy sigh** just quit?

Not the best mindset to bring to the New Year.

Then from out of the blue, literally, things happened to convince me, maybe, I was wrong.....
After giving us a pass for most of December cold weather wise, Mother Nature changed her mind and brought winter to Michigan with a vengeance. Complete with frigid temperatures, and day after day after day with snow in the forecast. Doing our part to help the creatures who live in our midst survive, the two bird feeders in the front were filled with seed, the one in back too. Corn and various other critter friendly morsels were strewn on the ground beneath each. Soon a couple of Blue Jays, a flock of sparrows, and one of two local squirrels came by, sharing the yard in peaceful coexistence as they ate. Warm inside, I stood out by the window to enjoy the show. With my own fill, vision wise, I turned back into the dining room when…

Bam! Thump! From out on the deck, something hit the back glass double door. Hard!

Serenity shattered, I hurried over to see. There lay one of the Sparrows…flat on its back, wings spanned out as if to make a tiny angel in the snow. That little chest heaving, beak twitching. Finished for sure. A slow and painful way to die. How sad. Poor thing. Never knew what hit it—more like the other way around. No better way to break a contented mood. Worse there was nothing I could do to help. Still, I had to do something. But what? After I few moments pacing, thinking, wondering I went back to check. Still lying there. Still breathing. But that was about it.



More pacing on my part as I thought about lining a shoe box with towels. Then what? Pace some more. Think. Wonder. At my next check, the creature was upright, standing on quivering legs. Wings still outstretched. Still badly shaken. A few minutes later…gone! That tiny angel impression in the snow the sole reminder of any mishap.

Hmmmmm. I wonder…..

That night, what do you know, along came another out of the blue event. An e-mail from my fabulous former editor. I’d won a prize in a blog contest she’d run. Was I still had the same mailing address? In my, yes I’m here response, I added how we needed to catch up. After some back and forth regarding updates on our respective home fronts, I told her about what I had in the works, writing wise. How things were going—or not going—with my ill-fated WIP. Then, just for fun I shared my concept and tag lines.
BROTHERS IN BLUE four heroes who met at the police academy and became life-long friends.The dropout, the straight arrow, the movie star, and the maverick, they all share a passion to protect and serve, each in his own unique way.

DECEIVED BY TRUST A former cop seeks vengeance only to discover love.

BOUND BY DUTY An undercover cop tracks a serial killer straight to the woman he loves.
CLAIMED BY PRIDE A super hero cop takes over what little family a young widow has left.
RULED BY HONOR A maverick cop has an agenda, a free spirited woman has anything but.

Guess what? Turned out she love, love, loves the story idea and adores the tag lines. Her wonderful words, not mine. Really? You think so? Then she went on to suggest other publishers I might try. So you think maybe…..

Yes!

Guess what? Once again, I’m inspired…..




January, first month of the New Year 2016. The season of fresh starts. New beginnings! I’m on it!!

My days to blog here are the 11th and 23rd. For more about me and my stories, please visit my website


 

28 comments:

Brenda Whiteside said...

You lift my spirits this morning, Margo. And I too love your idea. It's a wonder it hasn't sold. Good luck, keep writing.

Margo Hoornstra said...

I'm smiling, Brenda. Glad I could help. I'll also take the positive thoughts. Thank you. All this is not to say I'm not grateful for what I have in my life every single day....however.....another sale would be so nice! ;-)

Melissa Keir said...

Congrats! I loved the tagline too! Wonderful premise! Get to writing!

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

Amazing how things can change in a moment. Congrats and good luck with the new books!

PamT

Leah St. James said...

That's so cool, Margo--both the sparrow and the agent. :-) I think it's a fantastic idea too (the series). Wishing you much success with it!

Maureen said...

I love the story ideas-wishing you much success!

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

Go you!!! I'm so proud of your determination. We all have periods of self-doubt. I think it's part of our creative nature. I don't know about others, but I do need validation. A positive word from an editor does wonders. Now, go wow the world with your writing!!

Maris said...

Great blog, Margo. Your experiences are typical of most writers: you're on a roll and suddenly, bang, you hit a wall. Some writers stop writing when that happens. Give up. You, I'm glad to see, have moved on. The series sounds fantastic. I'm sure it will soon be picked up.

Jannine Gallant said...

Glad the birdie survived! Uh, have I not told you (multiple times!) you'll find the right home for this series? Just keep writing!

Rolynn Anderson said...

The series should fly high! Love the concept. Luck is on your side!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Thank you, thank you, Melissa. Can do.

Margo Hoornstra said...

It is pretty amazing, Pam. All for a reason. Thanks for the good wishes.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Thanks, Leah. Very cool, I agree and I really had nothing to do with either one. Just an observer.

Alicia Dean said...

What a great post, like I was reading a short story. I was completely pulled in. :) Congrats on the inspiration. The series idea sounds fabulous!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Aw, thanks, Maureen, I appreciate the kind words.

Susan Coryell said...

I had a similar experience--first publisher of my cozy mystery/Southern Gothic folded but recommended my current publisher The Wild Rose Press which I love.
Ya never know! Nice post.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Thanks for the fabulous pep talk, Vonnie. I sooooo needed that. I'll do my best, wow wise. ;-)

Margo Hoornstra said...

You're so right, Maris. And thanks for the kind words about the series. Here's hoping!

Margo Hoornstra said...

Yeah, yeah, yeah, Jannine. You're absolutely right. (Did I just say that?) Guess so. Thanks for the support. It truly does mean a lot.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Flying high. I like that Rolynn. Thank you.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Thanks, Ally. Encouraging words, coming from another editor and all. ;-)

Margo Hoornstra said...

It has happened to all of us, Susan, I'm sure. TWRP is a great publisher too.

Diane Burton said...

What a great post, Margo. Wonderful news for you and uplifting for the rest of us. Love the premise and the tagline for each book. Wishing you all the best with this project.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Thanks, Diane. Glad you enjoyed the post. I have to say this one has been a looooonnnnngggg time coming. Here's hoping!

Lucy Naylor Kubash said...

I love the concepts for the new books! So glad you've decided not to give up. Maybe that little bird was there to show you, when you get knocked out you just gotta get back up again. Not having submitted anything to a publisher in a long time, I'm feeling very skittish about it all, but when I finally finish this book in progress, I will be back in that game again. Good luck to both of us!

nicolefittonauthor said...

Thanks Margo, you have really uplifted me today, thank you for sharing. Glad the sparrow is OK and good luck with the new release. Loved the excerpt.

Margo Hoornstra said...

You still inspire me, Lucy, with your WW track record! You're right. Getting back up is what it's all about! Both of us do deserve the luck, don't we?

Margo Hoornstra said...

Nicole. Thanks so much for the encouragement you've given me.