Tuesday, February 26, 2013

New Book! Follow the Prophets

It has been a while since posting, but I promise I have been busy in the interim. About a year ago I submitted a manuscript of 52 lessons based on life stories of latter-day prophets to Covenant. The manuscript, due to the economy, had been previously declined by my former publisher--so I was very uncertain how this manuscript would be received. During the week of spring break Covenant contacted me to see if I would be willing to supplement the manuscript with additional activity pages, and if so would I submit a few more samples.

Just after receiving this request, our family took a little trip up to Show Low to stay in a cabin for a few days. I took my laptop and art supplies with me and spent time putting together eight more activity pages in my spare time. And before heading home I e-mailed off a pdf of the pages. My hopes rose a little after this, but I still wondered.

And waited. And wondered.

And waited some more.

In May or June (I forget which, but probably June), I contacted Covenant to see where things stood. For those unfamiliar with working with publishers, they tend to be very busy and a little less communicative than authors would prefer. My contact was out of the office on her honeymoon, so I had to wait a little longer.

Finally, the last week of June I got the word: my manuscript was accepted (contingent on finishing the remaining 30 or so activity pages needed). And they wanted it all done and submitted by the first week of October because they were expediting the project for a January release as the book works well with this year's Church history Sunday school curriculum. At first I was thrilled!! So excited!!

Then I looked at the calendar and realized the amount of work I had in front of me. You see, an activity page generally takes about 3 to 4 hours to conceive and put together and edit. And if there is any art work needed for it, then I would need to add an additional hour or two. This realization sobered me from my excitement very quickly.

To make sure I could finish the project I put myself on a schedule. Each week I had a mini deadline, for which I would e-mail off files to Covenant. I had to force myself to stay on top of this because I work two, sometimes three jobs. And I have kids that like to be fed and wear clothes and sleep in clean beds. Week by week, for three months, I worked through this schedule until the first week of October arrived and the last of the activity pages were sent of {HUGE sigh of relief}.

After completing that huge project I kind of needed a little break from writing. And over the holidays I ended up being slammed with research projects. The second week of December I had another call from Covenant. They needed my jpeg files for the art work I had drawn for some of the activity pages. It took three hours to send all of the files. But in the process the editor sent me the cover art for my book, which I loved (it is my favorite cover of the three of my books).

January arrived before I could even believe it. The second week of January I came home from work and grabbed the mail on the way in to the house. In the mail was a Deseret Book flier - and inside was my book! I had not seen the hard copies yet, so this was a surprise. But just a few minutes later I noticed a big package on my doorstep, and inside were my books. It was almost like my new baby had finally arrived!

So, that kind of brings you up to date on what has happened with my writing this past year. Although I doubt anyone is still reading this blog after my neglect, know that I am still alive, kicking, and writing.