Saturday, March 18, 2017

Savvy Saturday: My First Published Book with Shiela Stewart

Its hard to believe its been 11 years since I published my very first book. The title was Kidnapped and the story started with a simple line.

”Well wasn’t this a fine predicament she’d gotten herself into now, and won’t dear old daddy be thrilled when he finds out his only child was being held captive by a bunch of thugs.”

That line popped into my head and the rest of the story just flowed after that. I couldn’t write fast enough. Yes, write. That was before I knew how to use a computer. I hand wrote all my books. To this day, I still have a box of hand written manuscripts in my storage room. Only two of the twenty have been published.

During writing Kidnapped my hubby bought me a computer and taught me how to use it. I started putting my written novel on the computer. Kidnapped, though it sounds series, and it is, but mostly it was a fun novel. Before it was changed, but I’ll get to that.

I love being sarcastically funny as does my hubby, so of course, that was how I wrote Kidnapped. The female, Elizabeth, didn’t take the kidnapping series which pissed her captors off. Mac needed money to save his farm and was convinced to kidnapped to kidnap a famous actors daughter for money. All he had to do was hold her for a few days and then release her and get his money. Simple, right? Not! Elizabeth is not about to sit by and cry, begging her captors to let her go. Nope, she’s a feisty chick who does everything in her power to break free. She makes Mac’s life a living hell. She makes fun of him in any way possible. Really, who could take a captor series when he’s wearing a Bart Simpson mask.

Writing Kidnapped was so much fun I often found myself giggling while typing.

I got up the nerve to submit it to a publisher on line, and guess what? It was rejected. But….the publisher told me how to fix it up and asked me to resubmit it. I bought a bunch of grammar books and learned all I could about writing. It took months and when I sent it back to her, she sent it back saying I was on the right track but it needed a bit more cleaning. So back to the drawing board I went.

Two weeks late I sent it back in. I dreaded seeing her email in my box because I was sure she would tell me it needed more work. To my utter surprise, she accepted it. I think the neighbors heard my cheer. It was such a euphoric feeling. Someone thought I was good enough, my story was good enough. It still needed polishing, and that was not an easy thing to do, especially when she wanted me to make it ore series and to change the beginning. I was mad, but what could I do. I knew nothing about publishing so I went along with it and rewrote a good portion of it. 

I wasn’t happy, but I still put my heart into it. The first time I saw my cover I again felt so giddy. A book, with my name on it, was going to be out in the world for everyone to read. It was a huge accomplishment for me, given I only had a grade nine education. I knew nothing about ebooks and got a crash course on it. Ebooks were still early in its development. I did the chat circuit and answered countless interview questions. Then my publisher submitted it to The Romantic Times Review Magazine. I got a three out of five rating. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t horrible. It was after all in one of the biggest romantic magazine in publication. Sales were great. I bravely decided to do a book signing at a local book store and did an interview for a local TV station. So many firsts and my head was spinning. To my utter surprise and joy, my book was the number one seller for three weeks in a row. Not a bad way to start a career in writing.

Since then, I have published 17 books. Quite and accomplishment for a high school drop out. Not all my books are still in publication, but I hope at some point they will be again.

I’m a true believer that dreams can come true if you work hard enough to make them a reality.

About Shiela:

Shiela Stewart has been writing for the better part of her life, pouring her heart out in words, living a fantasy through the characters she creates. It has always been a dream of her to have her work published, a dream she has finally seen come to life.

When not writing, Shiela likes to spend time with her husband, best friend and love of her life. Together they have three grown children and one granddaughter.

Shiela has a deep affection for animals which is evident in the seven cats, one dog, fourteen fish and one turtle.

Places to find me.


Places to purchase my Darkness series:

No comments:

Post a Comment