Joy

In this extremely competitive business, how weird is it that we feel joy for the success of other people? I know I’ve already talked about the support romance writers receive, but now I’m talking about specifics. Yes, there’s jealousy at times – we wouldn’t be human without it. But there’s also excitement that carries over the internet, carries over the phone lines when your friends find success.

My friend Robyn DeHart’s first book comes out in August. I was privileged to read the partial before she submitted it. I’ve been to her house and seen her notes on this book, the pictures she had over her computer when she was writing it. So when it sold, I was over the moon for her. Why? I felt invested in this. Plus, heck, we’d talked about sweating blood to get words on paper, we’d talked about the pain of being on the brink. When she sold, it brought the idea of selling into the realm of possibility. And when I got to read an advanced copy, I fell for Derrick. Hard.

One of the Wet Noodle Posse, Stef Feagan had finalled a couple of times in the Golden Heart, with long contemporaries (maybe not both times, but the first time we finalled together, it was long contemporary). The summer after we finalled the first time, she was frustrated. She was rejected all over the place, and what good was that Golden Heart final doing her? But she had this idea she’d been toying with in the back of her mind. Maybe if she wrote it down…. So, we told her to go for it. And man, she did. I think she wrote that book in two weeks (right before National). We in the WNP called it Pink, because that was the heroine’s name. We designed our shirts to have the color pink, because this character sort of became our mascot, the symbol of what we could do if we set our mind to it. Stef had two agents begging for this book by fall, it finalled in the Golden Heart, and two months later sold. It came out in April (Show Her the Money, a Bombshell) and it ROCKS. And again, this is another book I felt invested in.

Now we’re waiting for good news for Trish. Her agent loved the revisions she did and sent the manuscript over to Bombshell. I’ve read this book and it’s amazing. It is sooo a Bombshell. And when she gets that call, you can bet I’ll be dancing on the ceiling.

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21 comments:

Bonnie Ferguson said...

You said it all, Mary :) That we become invested and that the success of others speaks to the possibility! Go Trish :)

Jessie Ferguson said...

Yes, that's exactly right!! You feel invested, so it's like you are winning too... and in a sense you are, because it means that it's that much closer a possibility for you (and TRUST me, after reading your other posts... you WILL get there... usually we give up right when the good thing is supposed to happen).

MaryF said...

Thanks, guys! Jessie, I'm so proud of you - good luck with your art!

Elizabeth Kerri Mahon said...

Mary, I know that every time a writer in our chapter sells or wins an award, I feel like everyone in the chapter wins. We've all been there for each other for years, read each other's manuscripts, bought each other's books. We want our chapter members/friends to do well. I feel like a proud Mama.

Trish Milburn said...

Mary, you're awesome! Seriously, I have a sister named Mary, but who said I couldn't have two? :) Thanks so much for your kind words. And I feel the same way about your work. Beneath the Surface is awesome, and it should definitely sell. It's better than some books I've paid cold, hard cash for.

I think this feeling of hope and excitement for our fellow writers is one of the main reasons I love writing romance. My best friends are other romance writes.

Bonnie, thanks for your good wishes too. BTW, I think yours and Jessie's pictures are great.

MaryF said...

Proud mama is it EXACTLY, Elizabeth! Especially after you hear their struggles. When I joined SARA, Delores Fossen, now an Intrigue author, was about where I am now, and every meeting she'd tell us her ups and downs, so when she sold, we were SO HAPPY! And Emily McKay finalled in the GH, had an editor tell her she wanted to buy her book, but it took another 10 months after that before she sold. I was going crazy right along with her. But like Robyn, she gave me an ARC and I felt so - involved in the process.

Trish, you're so right about the joy being a perk of being a romance writer. I know your Bombshell will sell - not if, but when. And I hope when is before Reno!

Thanks for your kind words about Surface, but it's nowhere near as good as yours.

Anonymous said...

Mary! Thanks so much for the support. And know that we're all here waiting with baited breath for when you get your Call. ~Robyn

Kelly Parra said...

What a wonderful post, Mary! Yes, it feels great when someone sells, especially when they are ones dear to you. Your WNP is a terrific group! - Kel

Trish Milburn said...

I think Beneath the Surface is awesome. Your hero...excuse me, pardon me while I drool.

MaryF said...

Robyn, so glad you stopped by!! You know you'll hear me screaming if I get the call.

Trish, I am rather partial to Adrian. He's just - yum.

Kel, I tell you what, it was serendipity that these ladies finalled with me that year. It's just amazing that women who maybe see each other once a year can be as close as we are.

Michelle said...

That's one of the nicest things about this business--how much we root for each other. Here's hoping you get a sale soon!!

Joanna K. Moore said...

I think that's one of the best things about this industry...I really do feel a sisterhood with many, and when they do well, it's like a family member has done well...we all share in the joy!

We also get to know each other's ways, and help each other better in that way...Mary knows that when I get really down and dark and ready to quit, it's because I'm right on the cusp of something new. I was in that down and dark spot last week, so she encouraged me to start something totally different. I did, and it has really helped me jump start the juices again. Only a sister knows how to work you like that! :)

Thanks be to the Lord and Lady for it, too!

JoAnn

MaryF said...

Thanks, Michelle! Back atcha!

Go, JoAnn! And it's wonderful, too. Just a question - by the time you let me read it, how many times have you revised it? Keep in mind I may have to hate you for your answer....

Amie Stuart said...

Silly maybe but in a way it reminds me of high school--in a GOOD way *g* How you spent four years with your best friends going through every up and down together (and getting into trouble together). I think it's a bond that comes from all those shared ups and downs and so we do have an investment! I spent a lot of time thinking about epublishing and finally went to one of my crit partners and said, "hey I'm gonna go jump off a bridge, wanna come with?"

LOl

Joanna K. Moore said...

Don't beat me, Mar...LOL...I told you it was rough rough draft...I'd written it cold and then reviewed it one time.

JoAnn

MaryF said...

Oh, now, JoAnn, just when we were getting to be such good friends..... ;)

Joanna K. Moore said...

It's Gerard, Mar. All Gerard. Sigh.

JoAnn

MaryF said...

So, JoAnn, I helped with that, yes?

Joanna K. Moore said...

YES! I hadn't really "seen" Gerard until your blog, and until I saw POTO. I am totally hooked now.

JoAnn

Joanna K. Moore said...

AND....if you hadn't suggested trying to write something entirely different, I'd still be in that deep dark place where I wonder what I was thinking when I ever imagined I could write... :) Thanks, Mar.

JoAnn

MaryF said...

Yeah, well, it's in you, JoAnn. You just have to find the path for it to come out.

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