Sunday, March 28, 2010

"Back to the Homeplace" began in 1987

I first created the story, the characters and the setting of Back to the Homeplace in 1987 when I was actively involved with The Author's Resource Center (TARC) in Tucson, Arizona. It was first written in the word processing language WriteNow, one of the early versions, actually. It was saved on the old Mac, several times, transferred to PC, saved in an early Word version, and saved through many versions of Word... to Emporia and then to Hollister. It was in 42+ folders, one chapter per folder, plus a few or character sketches, etc. Some of the later chapters were blanks.

Someone asked about this, so here is the story. When I retired last year, I vowed to rewrite, finish the story, polish the prose, and get it published within a year. In December and January, I sent out the "finished product" to several people I trusted, to get feedback. The feedback suggested some major/minor revisions and a few more chapters.  With that work completed, I felt it was time to get it in print.

After rejects by two agents I respected the most, from my reserach - and I respect them more now, by the way, I also received contract offers from two mainline publishers. However, they were both "author-subsidized" contracts. I learned a lot from communicating at length with them and researching their business models in detail. One was a large publisher, one was a small publisher. The offers were virtually identical.... hmmm. I went with Vision to Action Publishing, the educational materials publisher with which I have already been associated in the text book business for many years (15+). It is our family business, and within the family we have all the skills the two publishing companies wanted us to pay for. I am very happy with the decision.

I'd be happy to answer any further questions or comment from anyone about the process. It has been very enlightening!

Bill ;-)

William Leverne Smith
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