Thursday, November 13, 2008

AT LAST....It's Finished

Hello, family, friends and random strangers!

It's finished, my first completed novel is finally done. It ended up being 457 pages, and although I have gone through and edited it about 6 times, there are still mistakes I'm finding here and there. I've got letters out to 12 agents, and am not hoping to be on the Oprah book club, just a nice little therapeutic side job from teaching.

It all started about 6 years ago. One night I couldn't sleep, and I took out an old notebook and began jotting down some ideas...'Our Story', as I called it at first. It was slightly rough, getting the dialogue and character's movements to flow, but after the 2nd chapter I got the hang of it. I then changed the title to "At Last," because the song by Etta James (which is our song, by the way--well, ours and a bazillion other peoples) was perfect. The lyrics flowed so well with our relationship/courtship, that it just had to be the title.

My sweet husband has been soooo super supportive of me. We went to the San Fransisco writer's conference a few years back, and he hung out the whole weekend while I was in sessions, networking, and at the different events. Love you Schro!

Then, as it always does, life happened. We found out we were pregnant with Timmy, and my dreams got put aside. Then Mikey came along, and I figured I'd make photo copies of it for their baby book. I had the novel finished, but not in it's current state, and the last chapter was only 6 pages.

This past year, when my sweet Mommy passed away, the therapist told me that I needed to do something for me again; something that I enjoyed. SO, I thought about my book. I dug under some files and dusted off my manuscript, and here we are 7 months later. I've had a wonderful time diverting my attention from sadness to such a wonderful 'chapter' in my life.

I am definitely not purporting that this is a Pulitzer Prize winning's not. I like to think of it as good old fashioned "Fluff". You know, "Fluff", like cotton candy. Nice and sweet, with only a little bit of substance. Something that you enjoy on a lazy summer's day while reading by the pool, or in the lodge while your husband and kids are out snowboarding.

I have asked 5 people to read it entirely at this point, and have been really excited with the responses. Thanks for all your help, Ashlee Jenn, Amanda, Jenna, Kalie, Lisa Ann, and Sabrina. I really valued your suggestions, and input. The excitement and love of my characters also made me feel like a million bucks.

So, the next step is to look for an agent. I've got 12 letters out now, with 2 rejections...nothing emotionally devastating, just not the right fit for those particular agents. Even all the research I've done, doesn't always pay off.

I hope you enjoy the 1st chapter, and will be posting some more info about the characters, and some links that they would all enjoy. Because, you know... the people that live in books, really do live. :)

~Anngela Schroeder

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