I’m not going to be coy here. I’ve been waiting to make this announcement for nearly ten years. And yes it is the announcement almost every author dreams of making. If you’re a really bad person, (or have not read enough Curious George books to learn your lesson) you could skip to the bottom of this post. But humor me, and read this first. I promise I will keep it short.
Almost exactly ten years ago, I had a dream. The dream was that one day I would publish nationally. I have worked hard. I’ve learned so much. I’ve had two agents. I’ve come close more times than I can count. I’ve thought I had it made and seriously considered never writing again—and that was just in the last year alone.
I know you want to hear the news, but first, here’s what I’ve learned.
1) Never, ever, ever give up on your dream. There is always more you can learn, and when things feel the darkest is almost always when you are the closest to your destination.
2) Maybe somewhere, somehow, someone has done it without the help of friends, but I’ve never heard of them. I know that I absolutely could not have achieved my dream without the help of great friends including my family, my critique group, fellow authors, readers, many, many of you here on this blog, and my best friend in the world, my wife. When you are really depressed, friends make all the difference.
3) Patience is huge. No one likes to wait. I think it’s probably the biggest complaint of all authors. But one thing my agent told me recently is that it seems like the people who wait the longest end up getting success the quickest when it does happen. That was the case with me.
4) I totally respect people who decide to self-publish. It’s a different road that hopefully leads to the same place as taking the traditional route. But let me tell you, anyone who claims agents and editors are mean and looking to keep authors down is full of it. I love my agent, Michael Bourret, and I love every editor I’ve ever worked with. They have made me a better writer and maybe even a better person.
5) Finally, never underestimate the power of putting the next words on paper. The announcement I am about to make to you was not the first book my agent pitched. I’ll give you the full story in the weeks to come. But this happened because I was working on something entirely different while the book I thought would sell didn’t.
So here goes. Almost two years ago, I programmed my cell phone to play, “Back in Black” when my agent called me. Three cell phones and two books later, my cell phone finally rang. Of course when I answered, the annoyingly charming Michael spent ten minutes taking about my recent camping trip. Then he said, “Oh, by the way, I have some good news.” And yes it was the news I’ve been waiting all these years to hear.
My middle grade horror series, The Grimville Case Files had sold. Here’s the listing from Publishers Weekly.
Andrew Harwell at HarperCollins Children's Books has bought a new middle grade series, The Grimville Case Files. It stars three monster-obsessed boys who must solve "fiendishly funny" mysteries; the first in the series is scheduled for publication in spring 2013. Michael Bourret at Dystel and Goderich Literary Management brokered a three-book deal for North American rights.
My editor is the totally cool Andrew Harwell who you can follow on twiiter at @andrewasalways. My agent is the rocking Michael Bourret of Dystel and Goderich. The first book in the series comes out Winter of 2013. It’s called Zombie Kid, and it may be the funniest and scariest book I’ve ever written.
I promise to have more info on Farworld book three soon, but for right now, I am celebrating my head off. Thanks for hanging with me all this time. I couldn’t have done it without you.
This paragraph is for all you bad bad people who skipped straight to the end of the post. Go back and read from the top. Those of you who got here win my undying respect and a virtual pat on the back. That is all!