Friends, I have to tell you. There are plenty of times that aren’t rosy during the publishing process, plenty of times when I’m pulling my hair out in frustration or am convinced that I can’t write my way out of a paper bag. But boy, when it feels right, it really feels right.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, on Monday I received the content edits of Wagered Heart, my May 2008 release, and I’ve been working on them all week. I finished the last 30 pages this morning. The book is now back in the hands of the capable people at Zondervan.
These edits done, I’ve just got to sing the praises of my editors. When I rewrote this book last fall, I had a tough time with it. I knew the story was still too rough when I turned it in. It needed help. Big time! And I told my editor so. It improved somewhat when I did what I call the “revise and polish,” yet it still wasn’t where I wanted it to be. But it got the shot in the arm it needed with this recent content edit. Both of the editors involved made excellent points for places that I needed to do more. Good editors always make a book stronger, and that’s what happened here.
There is something very special about the moment when I’m satisfied with a story. Often that doesn’t happen for me until I get the first positive review. I am usually a quivering mass of doubt until then. But satisfaction came to me for this story this week, building each day as I went through the edits. By the time I sent the document off, I was smiling. I can hardly wait for the book to be released. Of course, there are still copy edits and typeset galleys to go through before the release date arrives, but we are ever so much closer.
Wagered Heart represents a return to historical romances for me. My most recent books have been contemporary women’s fiction. They’ve often included a love story of some kind, but romance wasn’t the focus. It’s been almost three years since my last historical romance was released. Since I cut my writing teeth on this genre — and have won two Inspirational RITA Awards for books that were historical romances (Patterns of Love and The Shepherd’s Voice) — it feels good to return to writing them. I’m not saying I won’t ever again write another contemporary women’s fiction. But at least for the near future, I am looking forward to writing more historical romances.
You can go here to read the first chapter of Wagered Heart.