It's been quite a journey bringing this book to publication in the USA. Two summers ago my agent phoned me. She sounded excited, and told me the good news: We had a publication deal in the USA! Then she said, have you heard of Amy Einhorn? I said No. My agent explained to me who Amy Einhorn was and which books she had published, among them The Help by Kathryn Stockett. I got off the phone, looked Amy up on the internet, as you do, and I knew why my agent was so excited. I rang my husband to tell him the good news and he came home with this:
Amy rang me at home and we talked about my novel, and how she worked, and how she was hoping to sell Mrs Sinclair in America. A few weeks later we got to work on the US edits (some of which found their way into the UK version, just to keep things all tied up neatly).
A few months down the line, and we got the news from Amy that she was going to be leaving Putnam's Sons and I would have a new editor for Mrs Sinclair. I was a little disappointed, and daunted, but I needn't have worried. Amy's former assistant Liz Stein took over and she did a lovely job, over-seeing the cover design among other things.
Another few months down the line, and Liz rang me to tell me she was going to be leaving too! I was pretty worried this time, wondering if my book was going to disappear down a publishing black hole in between all these editors. We writers like, no, we LOVE and appreciate the stability of an editor who understands our work and is committed to it. Again, I needn't have worried. Helen Richard has taken over as my third US editor and has been a pleasure to work with. She keeps me posted about any reviews or write-ups and she seems as excited about Mrs Sinclair's fortunes in America as I am.
So there we are, and here I am on the eve of my first publication in the USA. It's been a long journey, and a learning curve, a pretty steep one at times. I've learned, again, that the pace of publishing is glacial... but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Writing is also a slow process and it's just the nature of it. I've also learned that nothing is permanent, people come and go just as they do in all other walks of life, and it doesn't pay to get freaked out over it. This is life, this is publishing. And actually I am fortunate to be having my novel published at all, something I try to remember when things don't always go to plan.
I have a signed US hardback copy to give away if anybody would like it. Please just leave a comment here on my blog or favourite/re-tweet/reply on Twitter @LouiseWalters12. Open to all, I'll post anywhere in this small world of ours.