5/1/15 UPDATE: The book is available now. Click here for ordering information.
Regular readers of this blog already know that my wife and I were blessed with the birth of our third child this month.
But there is another awesome piece of news that I haven’t yet publicly shared. While out on paternity leave, I signed a contract with a small press book publisher to bring my debut novel, Holy Fudgesicles, to print in the coming months.
A little history here…the first draft of the novel was a NaNoWriMo project clear back in 2010. After completing the first draft, I put it away for a while to finish some short stories and work on some other projects.
I revisited the novel in January to prepare it for entry in the 2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. Much to my joy and surprise, I got through the first round. It was knocked out in the second round, but that defeat came with three detailed critiques of the first five pages.
After that, I shelved it again to work on other stuff. I finished another novel in the 2011 NaNoWriMo, and then started working on a revision for Holy Fudgesicles, incorporating the critiques from the Amazon contest, with plans to enter the contest again in 2012. That time, I didn’t get past the first round. By then I was pretty sick of the novel anyhow, so I put it away for the rest of the year and focused on finishing as many short stories as possible.
In 2013, I worked on the first major revision of the novel and began sending out queries to agents. I had an almost immediate success as a semi high-profile agent requested a full manuscript. Thirty days later, I received a somewhat helpful rejection letter, but kept going. I had nothing but rejections until receiving a partial request from an agent I met at the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers conference in 2014. In the end, she decided not to take the novel, but she gave me a full page critique with her rejection that was extremely useful.
I was disappointed, sure, but also determined to find an agent. What I learned (about writing) at the conference, as well as the feedback from the contests and rejections, convinced me that this novel will eventually get published. A few writers at the conference suggested I try shopping around for a smaller publisher, since a good number of them will accept queries without agents. After so many rejections from agents (and we’re talking around 50) I decided to try that as well. So for the rest of 2014, I continued to query agents, but also queried a couple of smaller publishers.
Earlier this year, one of those publishers requested a full manuscript. And last week I signed the contract. So after nearly five years, Holy Fudgesicles will be published.
But what is the book about?
Here’s a teaser from the back cover blurb:
Getting run over by a bus can ruin your day, but it doesn’t have to ruin your summer. The accident leaves ninth grader Kyle Hickman seemingly dead at the scene as he makes a quick visit to an unexpected afterlife. He awakens unscathed with a new sense of being, an unclear mission, and mystical healing powers.
Holy Fudgesicles follows Kyle as he comes to terms with the new life resulting from his powers, while taking on the increasingly difficult tasks of covering his tracks and fulfilling his purpose.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll share some of my experiences with the publishing process, as well as what I learn in the game of marketing, right here on WriteGoodBooks.com. I’ll also be using my author site and facebook page for up-to-date news and publicity regarding the novel, so be sure to check them out as well.
And finally, I’ll be posting a cover reveal soon, once the official publication date is finalized.
This should be fun, and I have to say, I’m super excited about the experience!
(This article is cross-posted at www.JasonBougger.com)