November 21, 2015
In the beginning of 2014, I decided to write a monthly blog on The Year of IVY, since I was sure my book RESCUING IVY would be coming out sometime during 2015. I would tell the story of the book from idea to printed page.
I made a great start, writing about how I got the idea for IVY, my research, and how the book evolved. While my blogging was proceeding, publication of the book had hit a snag, a couple of snags even, and I feared that IVY wouldnít come out that year, or maybe not at all. And so, my inspiration for writing the blog, and indeed even working on my books, began to fade as my frustration built.
Publication of books has always been a frustrating business. Iíve read about Beatrix Potterís difficulties in trying to get her Peter Rabbit book published in the late 1890ís, driving her to publish the book herself in 1901. Jane Austen had similar issues with publishers, as well.
So while I told myself that I was in good company -- Beatrixís and Janeís books are still published today -- the whole situation preyed on my mind. And writing a blog, or indeed anything creative, is so dependent on whatís going on in a writerís mind.
In the beginning of 2015, a change came into my life, a change for good for both me and my books. While not actively looking for a literary agent, I unexpectedly was given the name of one that my friend, Peggy, thought might be perfect for me. My friend was right.
And so I began writing again. I wrote a number of early chapter books that have not found a home yet, but Iím confident they will. At the behest of an editor and with the encouragement of my agent, I actually turned an early chapter book into a picture book biography (something I never thought I could write) that is now under serious consideration by a press I would love to be published by. And, again at the suggestion of my agent, just these past few days I rewrote an old story that I love in a new form, and like a Phoenix rising from the ashes, the book now has new life.
Along the way this year, to my amazement and, not to mention, my relief, IVY began moving, albeit at a snail-like pace, toward publication, too. The book is now scheduled to come out in March, 2016.
So, Iím going to begin this blogging thing again, chronicling The Year of IVY II, and hope that the sequel turns out better than the original. Please check back and see what happens.