Here we are again -- the Friday before Labor Day weekend. It was this day last year that Pete, Dara, and I held our breaths and clicked on the button that made our Kickstarter campaign live. Pete was rather zen-like about the whole thing, having previously led a handful of successful crowdfunding campaigns. He assured me everything would be fine, as I paced around my apartment praying we might actually get a donor or two.
One year later, I can hardly believe what an adventure writing this book has been. Within five days, we raised 75 percent of our goal, and a few weeks later we surpassed it. Since then, I have traveled to El Salvador, read numerous books about the country, conducted upwards of 20 different interviews with the DeSotos' friends/family/acquaintances, and written 200 pages of the manuscript for SHOT. Whew!
In July, I began speaking with freelance editors, as our plan was to self-publish the book this coming December. I sent out a chunk of sample pages and got feedback from two potential book coaches that I highly admired. Both of them wrote back to me and said variations of the same exact thing: "Your writing is strong, the story is strong, so rather than self-publishing, why not write a proposal and try to get a book deal?"
Why not, indeed. We began to pray and think about this advice, and the more we did, the more it made sense. Why not give it a try? If it doesn't work, we can always self-publish, as that option will always be there. But if it does work . . . ?
How amazing would that be?? The story would have far more reach and it would even be on the shelves at Barnes and Noble.
I have spent the last four weeks learning about the publishing industry, researching literary agents, and hammering out the best book proposal I could possibly write. I also had the privilege of being mentored through this process by three of the most awesome and supportive women ever: Kate Watson, Claire Bidwell Smith, and Jenna Birch. I owe boatloads of gratitude to all three of you for your guidance and advice. No matter what happens, this book has grown leaps and bounds in the last month.
Next week, I will begin sending my proposal out to literary agents, as that is the first step toward getting a book deal. Yet another milestone in this journey!
As always, we would love it if you guys would partner with us in prayer. Please pray that God would open doors and lead this story, HIS story, wherever it's meant to be.
Thanks so much, and we'll be sure to keep you posted!
~ Christy, Dara, & Pete