Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Grateful Author Tale #4: Helpful Competition

SF Romance author Linnea Sinclair took time off from a howling Dec. 15 deadline to write:

I'd not be where I am--deep in blissful deadline hell--without the assistance of other authors. I'd not have my terrific agent, Kristin Nelson, if it weren't for the selfless act of RITA award- winning author, Robin D. "HeartMate" Owens, who, upon chatting with this little then-e-book author at a writer conference, whipped out her cell phone and called HER agent when she (Robin) found out I was unagented. Robin sent me to Deidre (THE DEIDRE) Knight, who gave me one of the loveliest rejections ever AND turned me over to HER friend, agent Kristin Nelson. Who contracted me and sold me within three months to Bantam. Now, how's that for a lovely bunch of happenstances, all based on kindness between "supposed competitors"?

Other delightful darling "competitors" who've embraced me and helped me: author Susan Grant recommends me to her readers. Along with Susan Grant, authors Susan Kearney, Cathy Clamp, Rowena Cherry, Colby Hodge and I swap bookmarks and share promo expenses. We all write for the same or similar genres. Theoretically, we're competitors for the same readers. But yunno, we subscribe to the belief that readers can read 'em faster than we can write 'em. So by banding together we're not stealing readers but doing all we can to keep readers interested in the exciting and fun genre of science fiction romance. No matter who writes it. [Authors in all genres, take note!]

Other Random Acts of Authorly Kindness:
Mega famous author Mary Jo Putney spends time in a one-on-one lunch with me at RWA National, when surely she could have been furthering her stellar career instead of advising me and my newbie-ness on mine. Romantic suspense author Monette Micheals (aka Attorney Babe Moni Draper in real life) answers my emails on legal issues whenever I send them, with delightful humor and aplomb. Author Catherine Asaro nommied me for the John W. Campbell Award a few years back.

I know I'm missing a lot. It's a blonde thing. A senior blonde moment.

Non-Author Act of Kindness:
My current WIP and source of my deadline mania has, as its protagonist, a Florida homicide detective. Yeah, I write science fiction romance and this is. I just have this Florida cop stuck in it. Working with me on this story as an advisor is a Florida sergeant who--bless him--works 11pm to 7am on patrol, has a lovely wife, two kids, an ailing mother and certainly does not need a lunatic author emailing him questions dang near daily. But he answers every one with thoughtful detail and a very genuine desire to help. For free. The man is not only a terrific resource but a wonderful person. Very much an unexpected kindness.

So that's the scoop for the moment. I need to get back to helping my homicide detective save Florida from evil outerspace zombies. But I did want to contribute my gratitude stories. I am grateful, not only to all of the above but to you, Bella, and professionals like you who take the time to interact with authors and share the journey with us.

1 comment:

Rowena Cherry said...

Linnea is so gracious! And what a powerhouse. I'm grateful to Linnea for all her help, advice, and expertise, too.

Susan Grant is another author who shares and mentors newbies.

Two very gracious ladies!

Rowena Cherry