As the countdown to midnight began so we could farewell 2012 and welcome in 2013, I wondered what the New Year would bring. Wealth, a multi-book contract and mega sales came to mind. But isn’t the health and happiness of your loved ones and yourself more important? World peace, the cessation of world hunger, these are all important. Not that I am going to write about these things. Today, I want to talk of make-overs. Not the kind where you get a new hair style or update your wardrobe to something more modern and sophisticated.
My make-over is to do with manuscripts.
You know what I mean, those manuscripts hidden away in a drawer, stuffed under the couch, or packed away in a box in the shed or on a USB stick shoved in your jewellery box, never again to see the light of day. Those clumsy first novels that you poured your heart into, wept over, and then mourned their passing when you decided they couldn’t be resurrected from the dead.
Fortunately, you kept on writing, honing your skills, sending off query letters and sample chapters until finally it came: The acceptance. What a thrill that was. You contacted all your friends and family, did the happy dance, joined the loops and created your own website.
Edits came and went, then your book arrived. You held it in your hand, drooled over the fabulous cover, caressed the pristine pages, and like vintage wine you savoured the perfume of new paper. You had made it. Your perseverance had paid off. So, you wrote a couple of more books and they were accepted. You were a multi-published author now.
You attended the conferences, gave talks at the local library, revved up your internet presence, and all the while, those manuscripts, those first few stories rotted away in the shed or hid in the jewellery box, cruelly cast aside and forgotten in the excitement of being a published author. You didn’t need them, like one of the rakes in your novel, you dumped these poor souls and left them alone and unloved while you went on to the next conquest.
Fast forward a couple of years. Your publisher is screaming for another two manuscripts from you. There is a deadline, but your creativity has suddenly disappeared. You heard on the grapevine, that those authors who don’t produce the required number of books would be dumped. What can you do? Desperately you rack your brains, stare at the unforgiving blank computer screen. Your muse has gone. Deserted you in your hour of need. BUT all is not lost. You can pull out the old manuscripts, breathe new life into them, and send them off to your publisher.
I did this with my manuscript Savage Possession. It had lain dormant on my computer for a several years. Under a different title it had made it into the semi-finals of the Amazon Break Through Novel Award and for reasons I don’t recall, I relegated it to the bowels of my computer and virtually forgot about it, until my publisher, anxious to fill in an unexpected gap in their publishing schedule, asked me if I had anything suitable. I rescued my manuscript from the deepest, darkest depths of my computer, gave it a make-over and sent if off, all within a month.
SAVAGE POSSESSIONRaw sexual emotion, revenge and redemption. If you want a sugar-coated romance, Savage Possession is not for you. In colonial
A sweeping tale of love's triumph over tragedy and treachery in frontier
A mistaken identity opens the door for Martin Mulvaney to take his revenge on the granddaughter of his mortal enemy.
An old Scottish feud, a love that should never have happened, and a series of extraordinary coincidences traps two lovers in a family vendetta that threatens to destroy their love, if not their lives.