So you probably remember from last year that I entered that writing contest on Amazon. If not, here's a quick recap. Amazon.com holds a contest called Amazon's Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA) where they accept 10,000 submissions for unpublished novels. There is a series of rounds and books are cut from 10k to 2k to 500 to 100 to 3 to 1. My novel, The Gifted, made it to the top 100.
I'm a little sensitive about this right now, so bear with me.
This year, I didn't get to enter a novel. I didn't have anything in good enough shape, and the novel I wrote in November was a sequel to The Gifted. I really tried to write another one so that I could enter it, but I only made it about a third of the way into the novel and had to put it down and walk away. Something about my little boy being more important.
So I'm not entering this year. It's not a huge deal, except that one of the judges is one of my all-time favorite authors. And they've split the grand prize this year (a publishing contract with Penguin) into 2 parts. One publishing contract for general fiction, and one for Young Adult...my genre! So my chances were better than last year, assuming my work was up to par.
I just feel sick about missing out, but every time I look at Seth I know I am making the right choice.
I tried to ignore the looming date on the calendar for when they started accepting submissions. I actually forgot it was today until I got an email a few hours ago saying, "Amazon is now accepting submissions..."
I bit my lip and closed my email, hoping to erase it from my memory. No luck.
And lastly, to add to the pain, the Amazon.com webpage that featured the excerpt from my book (and your wonderful comments) has been deleted. I forgot to check it one last time until tonight. But it was too late. The webpage was gone, and all I have are my prideful memories of my name in bold letters at the top of the screen.
So, and update on the Gifted. I've sent it to many publishers, and none of them feel strongly enough about it to pursue it. Yeah, that hurts. It's like being told no one wants to look at you because you're not pretty enough. But I have been doing a lot of thinking about this. I decided that while it would be nice to be a famous author (and Tyler wants me to make millions so he can retire), that is actually not what is important in life. In the eternal perspective of things, it won't matter if I got published. I just don't feel great about trying to get published by a publishing house unless I thought my work could help someone. And, while entertaining, The Gifted is not what we call "enlightening."
Now, my dad is a published author, as well as my aunt. My own sister has some short stories published. Am I saying to be published is naughty? Absolutely not. What I'm saying is that I have decided to take the "easy" way out and self publish. Meaning I'm pretty much representing myself here, and someday you will be able to buy and read The Gifted from Amazon.com or Barnesandnoble.com. But don't expect to see it on the New York Times Best Seller list...or even made into a movie.
I'm just not that gifted....:)