I’d never really thought of what it would be like to get an offer of a contract from a publisher. Well, I had, but not like I thought about what my wedding would be like. You know – the kind of thinking you do as you lie in bed at night.
So, when it arrived I felt as though I’d just entered ‘The Twilight Zone’. To begin with, for some perverse reason known only to my server, it was relegated to ‘Junk Mail’. I opened it expecting to see another ad to delete, and found instead – paradise.
Or was it?
The publisher – the one I’d described as my ‘last, best hope’ – said that she liked the series concept, I wrote well and was prepared to offer me a contract for the series, if . . .
Come on, you knew there was an ‘if’, didn’t you?
The little ‘if’ concerned a plot element. Now, I’m not an unyielding person. I’m willing to work with editors, agents and publishers. I'm a team player, or at least I want to be. I'll do just about anything short of selling my soul to get my writing ‘published’.
The trouble is I pitched the book as the first in a series of four completed, with more planned. The publisher was offering me a contract for that series. And after all, she was only asking me to remove a seemingly non-essential plot point in the first novel. However, it’s a plot point that affects Book Two considerably, and Books Three and Four are non-existent without it.
I could have lied to her. I could have told her that I’d do whatever she wants and signed her contract. But then I wouldn’t have the series I pitched.
Why is it that I keep trying to do the ‘right thing’ and it keeps coming back to haunt me?