THE TWISTS AND TURNS ON THE ROAD TO PUBLICATION
by Lacy Williams
My journey to publication definitely has had more twists and turns than I could have imagined, but I’ve felt God there with me the whole way—sometimes almost poking me to say, “this *is* what you’re supposed to be doing!”
Originally, I thought it would be so easy to get published—you write the book, an editor loves it, and BOOM you’re published.
The first eye-opening thing for me was right after I joined the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) in late 2006. I subscribed to their main email list and BAM—was inundated with all these emails asking and answering questions about passive voice, head-hopping and POV (what was that anyway?), developing a platform… I immediately knew that there was a lot I *didn’t* know. I needed to learn how to write a well-written book. So I joined a critique group.
Next eye-opening thing. Not everybody “got” my writing. My critique group liked the story, but boy were they picky about things like “your character doesn’t have enough motivation” and “why would your hero do that? it doesn’t make sense!” Hmm… maybe I needed to work a little more.
I attended my first writing conference in September 2007 and that’s where I really started to feel God was an active part of this journey with me. Not only was I uplifted by worshipping and chatting with all these other writers, not only did I receive excellent instruction, but I had my first editor and agent appointments. I visited with the editor first, with my onesheet (sell-sheet) in my shaking hands, and she LIKED the story! In fact, she asked for the full manuscript. I really felt like it was a confirmation from God that I was pursuing something He wanted me to be doing.
Then came what felt like a big mountain in my path. Called life. Overtime hours so I had less time at home to write. Other family responsibilities. And learning the craft of writing well enough to write a *good* book? Well, that didn’t come quickly to me either. I plodded through draft after draft of my story… and then finally decided I was trying to write in the wrong genre. That was another God moment for me. When I started writing historical romance and contemporary romance (instead of romantic suspense), the words started flying onto the pages.
Skip ahead a little. In 2009, I finaled and won in ACFW’s Genesis contest for unpublished writers. My future editor requested my full manuscript—and then in 2010, when I finally sent it in, she bought it. I also signed with my agent at that time.
I have to admit, those last few months between finaling in the contest and selling my book seemed to fly by compared to the time spent slogging through draft after draft of what turned out to be an un-sellable manuscript.
*BUT* I never would have been able to write and sell MARRYING MISS MARSHAL without having the experience of doing that. I learned so much about craft—how to create complete characters, how to write chapter ending hooks, how to keep the romance alive through a whole manuscript… Without that time of waiting and working, I wouldn’t be published today.
So. Moral of the story: don’t give up. Work hard, learn lots, write a lot. And keep your eyes open for those moments when God will show you you’re on the right path.
MARRYING MISS MARSHALL
by Lacy Williams
Love Inspired Historical, 2011
Filling the shoes of her late husband as town marshal hasn't been easy for Danna Carpenter. She's not only fighting criminals, she's also fighting to earn the respect of the townspeople. So crossing paths with tenderfoot detective Chas O'Grady is the last thing she needs. He's hunting a band of cattle rustlers and isn't used to the rugged Wyoming landscape. Teaming up is their only option, but when circumstances place them in a compromising situation, the town forces a more permanent partnership—marriage. If they can let down their guards with each other they might find that love is the greatest catch of all.
RT Book Reviews says, "Williams’ debut is a great story with a twist, and it will keep readers riveted." (August)
Publisher's Weekly calls it "warmly romantic with a hint of adventure and an unconventional heroine" and "Williams's storytelling style is ... easy to follow to its cheery conclusion" (June)
Lacy Williams is a wife and mom from Oklahoma. Her debut novel won ACFW's Genesis award before being published. She promises readers happy endings guaranteed. Lacy combines her love of dogs with her passion for literacy by volunteering with her therapy dog Mr. Bingley in a local Kids Reading to Dogs program.
Lacy loves to hear from her readers at firstname.lastname@example.org or via her website www.lacywilliams.net. ou can find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lacywilliamsbooks