Friday, September 18, 2009

Four Questions Friday on Sapphire Phelan's Blog

Today I ask four questions about love. Come leave your answers in the comments.
Sapphire Phelan

Go beyond the usual, instead take the unusual that stretches the boundaries and find romance with Sapphire Phelan's aliens, werewolves, vampires, fairies, and other supernatural/otherworldly heroes and heroines.

Available now: from Phaze Books: the erotic urban fantasy, Being Familiar With a Witch:
Tina doesn't know she's a witch. It will take Charun, her demon Familiar, to convince her to make love with him and let loose her witch powers.
For if she doesn't, then with the demon army about to bring Armageddon to the Mortal Realm on Halloween, she won't stand a chance in Hell.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Saoirse Redgrave: A Tale of Werewolves

Teenage love, loss and--oh, yeah--Werewolves. Monsters are everywhere and what if the most frightening isn't a werewolf at all? Jessica's life seemed tragic enough since the loss of her mother, but meeting Pietr turns her world upside down again. The newest member of Junction High, Pietr has secrets to hide--secrets including dramatic changes he is undergoing that will surely end his life early.

Saoirse Redgrave’s cell phone novel 13 to Life: A Werewolf’s Tale was picked up by St. Martin’s Press in a 3 book deal after taking first place in the 2008 Textnovel contest. 13 to Life: A Werewolf’s Tale was written as a cell phone novel in 5 short weeks. As her road to publication is fascinating, Saoirse was kind enough to tell us how it all came about.

In a press release I read that you had chosen Textnovel as your exclusive literary agent. Can you share how they acted as your agent and was it through them that St. Martin's became interested or was it through your own effort?
Ah. This was around the time I started blinking rapidly in life due to shock and surprise. ;-) Along with the original cash prize of $1,000 I also was given the option of having Textnovel's founder, Stan Soper, as my agent. Stan's a Yale man with a degree in contract law and he was just starting towards becoming an agent. We had a very frank phone call (just my style) and he assured me the cash prize was still mine whether I wanted representation or not. For the previous year I'd been hearing a very dear friend of mine complaining about the difficulty of attracting an agent. I didn't want to go through the headache she was having and (having read the contract Stan offered) figured: Huh. What the heck? A grand and another voice to support my attempts at getting published. The contract was adjusted at my request (Stan being tremendously reasonable) and we started getting together all those nightmarish things you're told you need (query, outline, summary...). Then Stan called me and said (before our queries were out) that St. Martin's was curious (having seen a press release Stan had done for the contest and little else). After a little dance of joy, we approached SMP. They wanted to see a full manuscript. HA!

You know that cell phone novels are amazingly brief--closer to screen plays in some ways, I think. I had been doggedly (hey, it's a werewolf story ;-) working on fleshing out 13 to Life. It was little more than a story skeleton that won, in retrospect. But I did NOT have a full ready. I asked Stan to buy me some time--I didn't want SMP's interest to wane, but I wanted to be ready. Stan got me 3 weeks, I think, and I worked my butt off (though writing for long periods of time seems to put a butt right back in its place ;-). Stan asked me if I had any questions for SMP and I said to my husband "Is now the time to ask if they're for real and do they know I'm a nobody or should we wait?" "Wait," he assured me (he probably sneaked in some line about me not being a nobody to him, but, whatever. ;-)

Meanwhile we were contacted by the first of several Hollywood producers and another BIG publisher expressed curiosity, too. When I wasn't writing (or dosing up on coffee and trying to catch a few winks) I researched the two publishers and the producer. And Stan juggled for me, keeping in touch with people, keeping my name out there (well, Saoirse's name). Finally, I shoved the manuscript past a few betas (including an awesome bookstore owner named Annette Fitzgerald who printed the whole manuscript--then about 350 pages, double-spaced--and had it bound so she could chew through it). In one day. A few minor things were tweaked and we sent it to SMP and the other publisher. [The other publisher's contact was on vacation and her second said that although they really liked the project, they thought it might be too young for their YA target audience (in retrospect, I doubt they really read it through). But. At the same moment (like, all this was literally happening right on top of the other--talk about a wild ride) SMP had asked about getting me under contract. Stan and I were on the phone again and Stan said (essentially) that he knew this story could go to more books and did I feel the same way? Why, yes, I did. My hubby and I had been chatting about how far I thought this could run as a series. I had notes and outlines (some tighter than the others). Stan asked, "How many books?" I told him I thought maybe four or five with potential spin-offs but could easily guarantee three. And shazam! A three book deal in the works and a Hollywood producer asking us if he could shop us to Disney (which we had to say not now since we were working on the contract).

Contracting was the scariest part for me. I read through it. The hubby read through it. Pal Deborah Blake (an author through Lllewellyn) read through it and Stan combed through it and brought in an additional publishing lawyer. We made suggestions, we got some changes, and feeling pretty darn good about stuff, signatures were placed on appropriate lines.

So, long story short, SMP contacted us partly due to a press release, but Stan was instrumental in sealing the deal. ;-)

More with Saoirse Redgrave...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Healer's Fate Cover

I just received the cover for my novella Healer's Fate. It is coming soon from Whispers Publishing.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Made in Czechoslavakia

The story I am going to tell you comes out of "The Ligourian" I read it long ago.

During WW2 Nazi's used lots of forced labor, Czechoslavakia was no different. People worked long hours in factories to build bombs for the Nazi war machine.
Resistance took many forms, workers began to sabotage the bombs, at risk of thier own lives.

One man recalled a battle where his squad was sure they were all dead. A bomb landed, with no where to run, they all stood frozen staring at the harbringer of death. The bomb was only inches from the men.

nothing happened.

A brave soul got closer and noted the bomb was made in Czechoslavakia. It was a dud. The saboteurs were successful. "Made in Czechoslavakia" became the squadron's battle cry.
As battles raged, bullets flew, the battle cry gave them courage to keep fighting.

Years later, the old soldier was in the hospital. The prognosis wasn't good and his family stayed by his side to hold his hand for what might be the last time.
His brother went to the gift store to buy a rosary so they could pray together.

He was taken down to surgery.
Hours later, they awaited the news.
How long would he have left?

Tears filled the doctor's eyes when he met with the family. He wasn't sure why or how, but the soldier recovered.

When the soldier was brought back to the room. He embraced his family and took the rosary from the box, a small piece of paper fell onto the bed.

It read: Made in Czechoslavakia.