I’ve done it. I’ve taken the Plunge!

What plunge is that you might ask? Well, let me tell you. On October 11, in response to my submission to 4RV Publishing, after a successful pitch the previous week, I was offered a contract!

Some of you are saying, yeah, yeah, we’ve heard that already. And you’re right. But this is a huge deal for me. I’ve been on the receiving end of reject letters more times than I can count (or care to for that matter) so receiving the offer was a huge morale booster.

For the first week, I babbled like an idiot. Nothing I said made sense. I was in such a state of awe, that my feet didn’t touch the ground. How I managed to accomplish anything at work still amazes me.

One of the first things I did was tell my fellow writers at two of the groups I belong to of my offer. Then I told everyone at loveahappyending.com. I mean it’s not every day that a contract offer comes along. If it did, then it wouldn’t be such a big deal.

Over the past few years, for many a weekend during the summer, and a week in February I did what became known in our family as “mother-sitting” since my mum wasn’t able to be home alone. I always took my laptop with me and spent many hours writing and revising whilst there. When friends dropped by, whether they’d heard the story before or been introduced to me previously, she always started the conversation, “You’ve met my daughter, Melanie? She’s a writer.”

Sadly, my contract offer came a year too late for me to celebrate with her. When I spoke at her funeral in September 2010, I said she would have been the first person I told after my husband, who has supported my dream all these years, eaten burnt offerings (tonight was no exception since I let the potatoes boils dry) when I’d been deep in writing a particularly gripping scene, or just taken over the kitchen duties for me.

So, since I couldn’t celebrate with my mum in person, I took the celebration to the cemetery, complete with a copy of my manuscript (just back from one of my beta-readers), my contract, and champagne! That was my mum’s favourite tipple. We always had it on special occasions – birthdays, anniversaries, Mother’s Day, Christmas, Thanksgiving and sometimes just because…

The last two years, my mum used a walker to get around. She called it D.N. (short for damn nuisance). But even though she depended on it to get around, I think when I landed in at hers and my dad’s graveside she tossed it aside and did a happy dance right along with me.

My dad died when I was twelve, long before I’d been bitten by the writing bug. The reading bug had long since bitten and I almost always had my face in a book or a pencil in my hand drawing. He knew I was creative and maybe even thought someday I’d be a writer or artist.

You can see why the celebration, albeit in a less than conventional location, was so important for me to do. And all of this was just because I’d received a contract offer!

In the weeks that followed, I did a lot of research, read and re-read the contract, asked the publisher questions, digested the answers received. Taking the next step would be enormous. Did I accept? Did I decline?

I didn’t make this decision lightly, although had I gone with my initial instincts, I would have signed immediately. Thankfully, my logical, down-to-earth side of me kept me grounded so that I could ask the questions, do the research and in the end make an informed decision.

Now, two signed, witnessed and notarized copies of my contract are in transit to my publisher – first stage via Canada Post followed by the US Mail. In due course, I’ll receive a copy back with her signature witnessed and notarized.

You can check out 4RV Publishing here. They also maintain a blog here. You can find them on Facebook and Twitter, too.

13 thoughts on “I’ve done it. I’ve taken the Plunge!”

  1. Melanie, I can emphasize with your wanting to celebrate with your mother. Mine didn’t live to see any of my books published either. She would have been so proud, too.

    We at 4RV are thrilled to add you to the family.

  2. This IS fantastic news and your publisher looks to be innovative and exciting – I see they only publish a few books a year and must have thought yours a true gem to have repsonded so quickly. All that hard work has been worth it and and I’m SO thrilled for you Melanie. I love the picture of you holding your ms and champagne and I’m sure your parents are looking down on you as proud as can be. Huge congratulations!! xx

  3. I couldn’t be happier for you, Melanie. I know how hard you have worked and you are so deserving of many good things. I just know this publisher will do a phenomenal job with your ms and you will join the ranks of the successful. I just KNOW it!

    Truly believe your Mom and Dad can see you – so lovely that you celebrated with them. Great picture.

  4. Huge congratulations Melanie. What a super post and a lovely way to celebrate with your mum and dad. I am sure they enjoyed the party and were happy to see you with your bubbly and manuscript. Loved the photo.
    Sue xxx

  5. Congratulations, Melanie! What a lovely idea to take your celebration to your mother and father. Wishing you every success in your new life as an author!

  6. Congratulations Mel !! I am very happy for u !!!!! This is really a fantastic news and I honour your feelings of sharing ur success with ur parents !!! May u get success at every step of ur life !! Be bold and keep going !! Amen !!

  7. Congrats Mel!! I am so happy for you…you made me shed a tear or two when I read about celebrating your success with your parents. You are a true inspiration…follow your dreams and never give up. I wish you continued success!

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