I will be heading off to Toronto tomorrow for a training course (I work as a realtor with Royal LePage Team Realty in Ottawa when I’m not writing novels, among other things. Hence my tag line: ‘when you want it done right, ask a busy person!’).
While there, I’ve arranged to meet my Canadian agent and my new Penguin editor face-to-face for the first time. Unfortunately the timing is such that we can’t all get together on the same night, so I’ll be meeting one on Sunday and the other on Monday for dinner.
I’m really looking forward to it — being able to put faces to what until now have been emails and phone calls.
I’ve had enough contact with my agent and my editor to know that I really like both of them. We share the same sense of humour, which is terrific. They’re both super smart. Practical. Easy to laugh. And obviously, highly literate people who love books. In other words, just the kind of people I like to be around.
I have some things on my agenda, for sure.
As someone who has trained law students, judges, and executives in Negotiations and Mediation, I know a certain amount of conflict within the publishing house is likely inevitable as we move forward — there are so many people involved. I’m interested in discussing what the roadblocks may be, how we will navigate them, and what I can do to help.
I also want to talk to my editor about the revisions she has in mind, and what her time lines are. I’d love it if we could get The Beggar’s Opera out in time for next Christmas. That may be impossible, but I’m willing to make my end of things a priority if there’s any prospect.
I also want to discuss some marketing ideas with her that I’ve tossed around with my social media-savvy daughter, like a website with a podcast and a video trailer for the book. In other words, what can I do — besides blogging — to help make this book a success?
When I meet with my agent, I want to see what she thinks about my second manuscript (still in the early draft stage) and how I can improve it. And with both of them, since it’s a two book-deal, I want to make sure I have a clear sense of what’s expected from me this year so that I can manage my time efficiently.
But the fun part will be getting to know each of them better.
I was thinking today that, in a sense, finding an editor/publisher to work with is bit like walking into an arranged marriage (with the agent as matchmaker). Following my agent’s introduction, the editor/publisher and I have made a long term commitment to each other. This weekend, we’ll get to find out if the personal fit is as good as we hoped.
I have every reason to think it will be, and that’s why I’m so excited. I liked my editor instantly the first time I spoke with her on the phone. She was enthusiastic and charming, and she absolutely loved the book. What’s not to like? And my agent, as I have said before, is absolutely great. I couldn’t be in better hands.
So, fingers crossed that the romance continues this weekend for all of us. Or as my Absolutewrite pal, Rosiecotton, said, with respect to her own pending offer: ‘legs crossed like Sharon Stone and eyes like Demi Moore :-).’
Along with everything else.