Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Stella's Headed for FIRST Magazine
Sarah Melnyk over at St. Martin's Press is a goddess among publicists. She's been doing an amazing job of finding readers for my Stella books, and today she bowled me over with this news: A BAD DAY FOR SORRY is going to be a December Editor's Pick in the December issue of FIRST magazine.
This is one of those sparkly dream-come-true moments for me, and not just because FIRST reaches over a million American women every month.
Back around the time my son was born (yes, that would be the boy who will be eighteen in a few weeks) I wrote for magazines. I've told this story before, but it bears repeating for any newcomers who've recently come to the campfire, especially writers. I bought myself a copy of Lisa Collier Cool's HOW TO WRITE IRRESISTIBLE QUERY LETTERS (still available - a classic that I recommend for anyone who wants to write for consumer magazines).
I had decided that I would send fifty queries before giving up. In one of those weird coincidences that litter my writing journey, I got all the way to fifty before I received a "yes" - and in another weird coincidence, it was for a parenting article for a now-defunct publication called EAST BAY KIDS. Living in Chicago at the time, I had never heard of the East Bay, the name for the suburbs east of San Francisco - but now I live there!
Anyway, I kept writing and kept querying. I wanted to make my way into the top women's magazines including Redbook and Women's Day and Family Circle...and FIRST, which at the time was a fairly new magazine, one which blended the sensible advice of its established sisters with a punchy new layout.
I never met that goal, but not for a lack of trying. Somewhere around here, I have the stacks of rejection letters from those years. I came close a few times (encouraging rejections from REDBOOK and COSMOPOLITAN), but eventually I was spending more and more time writing fiction and I put the magazine writing on the back burner, where it languishes to this day.
In 1995, if you told me that one day my name would grace the pages of FIRST, I would have been overjoyed. But to be featured there as the author of a novel? Now that's a dream come true.