Sometimes there’s a story behind a book and that’s the case for the one I’ve just revamped and self-published this week. Like the children’s book, this one also found a home at Muse It Up Publishing. Now I have the rights back, I decided to polish it, give it a new title, new cover and lower price.
Also like the children’s book, this one has what I like to call the story behind the story. This was the first mystery I wrote. I started it just as my father was getting sick but at that time we didn’t know how ill he actually was. About half way through penning it, Dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and given six months to live. Finishing it obviously went on the back burner so I could spend time with him. When he died, I really struggled to finish it. My heart really wasn’t in it anymore because I think I associated the story with him and his struggle with the disease. I knew he’d want me to get it published so I began sending it out. I got some good responses but still a no, it’s not quite right for us, from lots of publishers. I even had an agent show interest in it but after six months and lots of follow up letters to her, she too decided to pass on it.
Fast forward to 2013 and Muse It Up offered me a contract. I think it’s another example of how you shouldn’t give up on any story. It’s also shows how life and its inevitable events sometimes slow us down and sidetrack us but we have to keep on going. Sometimes it’s not so much talent that separates a published writer from an unpublished one, but the fact that the one with the published book, never gave up dreaming and hoping.
The original title of this book was Death Likes Me but Sleep No More seemed more appropriate. I also thought the new cover fitted the story’s dark and broody undercurrent. The whole revamping thing got me in the mood to add an excerpt for the next book in the series. It felt strange revisiting the characters after so long but doing so and reading through the story again, made me realize how much I’ve grown as an author. Plus, it’s given me a goal to add to my New Year’s Writing Resolutions and that’s to complete this second book in the series.
Here’s a look at the new cover, and once again I hope by sharing this story, I’ve motivated you to stay the course no matter what.