Writing has been a long, long, long journey for me. Most writing journeys are. While there are no life and death risks involved, the writing life is not for the weak-hearted.
I began this blog, and my fiction writing, back in 2008. On the coming new year’s day, I’m set to make my US debut with my second novel, THE BLUE BAR.
I’ve spoken about the journey of this novel before, so I wouldn’t go there. Instead I’d like to tell you about the changes I’ve made in my world view these last two years. Bear with me– it all connects.
End 2021, I broke up with my ex-agent. It was all amicable and pleasant, but I was back in the querying trenches. After the appropriate wallowing period, I got into research mode on agents even as I edited my novel yet again. Change number one: I was determined not to settle. I’d rather not have an agent, than not have a good agent. Intensive research, 55 queries and a massive dose of luck later, I landed four offers of representation, and picked Lucienne Diver.
Much editing later (two drafts in two months), we went on sub, and found paydirt with Jessica Tribble at Thomas & Mercer. Both taught me a fair bit about structuring my novel: even without the royalties, I consider myself compensated. Change number two: I focused on the learning, and not on the externals.
And MUCH luck later, I have THE BLUE BAR as an AMAZON FIRST READ. This basically means that Amazon Prime members and subscribers to the Amazon First newsletter can download the book for free, and (hopefully) leave a bunch of reviews before the book publishes on January 1 2023.
Change no 3: I’m not waiting for things to go wrong. Before this, whenever I had a piece of good fortune, I anticipated immediate misfortune. This time, I’m soaking it all in. Whatever happens will either bring a learning or a largesse. Both are a win, and guess what, my second book on contract will be out on October 24, 2023!
So far, so good. I don’t know what the future holds for me or my writing life, but covid shenanigans and losing my earlier agent has taught me that I need to live life on my own terms. Never settle. Keep trying. Give gratitude for good luck. Look for lessons in adversity, and soldier on.
That’s what my protagonist Arnav does in THE BLUE BAR. No matter the odds, he sticks to his principles, doesn’t settle, and is willing to take a lesson from defeat. He meets the love of his life at a dance bar, and that’s where his adventures begin.
The visit to the dance bar becomes the springboard for action, and he remains steadfast with his part in it.
What about you? When did you last go to a dance bar, real or metaphorical? Have you downloaded THE BLUE BAR?
My lit crime novel, The Blue Bar will be out soon with Thomas & Mercer. It is already available for preorders. Add it to Goodreads or pre-order it to make my day.
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