Making the Leap: From A Self-Published to an Actively Querying Author

Bride of DunlochI really should be working on my latest novel, A Noble Treason right now. It’s a follow-up to my latest release, A Noble Deception, and I know many of my readers are eager to find out what happens to the Black Douglas clan, and to be reunited (briefly) with characters Moira and Lachlan, and Alex and Glinis. That’s taken a bit of a back seat, though, because these last few weeks I’ve become side-tracked with a project that I can’t seem to put down …

I’ve decided to revisit my very first novel, Bride of Dunloch.

Yep, that’s right. I’ve got plans to extend it from a novella of 45,000 words into a full-length novel, and to build on the forbidden love between Robbie and Jane. I’m hoping to finally start querying agents and publishers with the revised version of Bride of Dunloch by the new year.

I fell into the world of self-publishing quite by accident. Here’s the story. I’ve always wanted to be a writer ever since I was young (hasn’t everyone?). In university I obtained my bachelor’s degree in Environmental Writing, of which a substantial part of the curriculum was creative writing. To gain experience in the writing industry, I began freelancing, writing short-stories on a work-for-hire basis. I know they were good stories, but to be honest, they weren’t my best work. They weren’t mine in the end, they were someone else’s storyline, published under someone else’s name.

After a year or so of this type of work, I became curious about what was happening with all these short stories. I Googled one of them, just to see where it had ended up. That’s when I first discovered this whole Kindle Direct Publishing thing – I’d never heard about it before. Realizing that I could publish a novel myself, I decided to sit down and really give it my all.Capture

That’s how Bride of Dunloch was born. I decided that, if I earned back the purchase price of my cover (less than $50 at that time, if you’re curious), I would consider the endeavour a success. Well, all my treasured readers, you’ve humbled me with your support and enthusiasm, and Bride of Dunloch was more of a success than I had ever imagined it could be. I began writing Uniting the Clans, and never looked back.

Up until now, however, I’ve never done much querying. I think I may have sent out two queries… maybe three, but no more than that. And I’m not at all sure that my query letters were all that good. Since I was doing so well on my own, I wasn’t even sure I wanted Bride of Dunloch published traditionally.

Well, I am at a different place in my writing career. I’m overwhelmed by the support of all my readers, and all the connections I’ve been able to make on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads and Amazon. I’ve also learned so much in the process, and have really grown as a writer. I think it’s the right time to start re-thinking Bride of Dunloch. I love the story I was able to create, and having been removed from the project for more than a year, I’m able to look at it objectively, to see where there is room for improvement and to see where I can build on things for which I’ve already laid the foundation. You can bet that I will be dedicating more time to Jane and Robbie, to really flesh out their time together and give readers something to sink their teeth into.

ExcitedI’m not sure how long this project will take, I’m thinking a few months, given that I’m trying to work it into my writing of A Noble Treason as well. But you can be sure, dear readers, that I’ll keep you posted. I may even post an excerpt or two, so stay tuned.


Love, V.

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