If At First . . .

Just because I had completed a book didn’t mean I was finished writing. This is what I discovered when I searched the internet for how to get a book published. So I wrote a one-page synopsis of my book and a three-page synopsis. I wrote chapter summaries and completed an author’s guide and a cover letter. For the first time in decades, I created a resume.

Just before Christmas, I sent my book to a publisher. Then I waited.

January passed and Ground Hog’s Day. I sent valentines to my grandchildren.

Just before dinner one evening at the end of February, my email dinged.

And there it was—a message from the publishing company.

Thank you so much for thinking of us, the email began. And I knew this wouldn’t be good. And it wasn’t, although it was kind—fine eye for detail, vivid prose, breadth of experience, impressive.

But it was other words that tore through me: It is with regret that we have to decline your manuscript . . . In an ideal world, we would definitely publish it. However, the realities of the publishing world these days . . . Best wishes as you pursue other options in publishing.

I told my husband. Later, I sent an email to my kids. For a while, I thought I was going to die, I wrote. And then I added, But now I think I might live.

(more later)

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