Friday, May 18, 2007

My First Blog Post Ever

A long time ago and in a galaxy far, far away (well, okay, in another country), a ten-year-old girl (that's me) fell in love with Nancy Drew. And her author(s), Carolyn Keene. She wanted desperately to meet Carolyn Keene. Then she wanted desperately to be Carolyn Keene.

And this is the story of how that sorta, kinda happened.

Only better. Because I'm getting to write middle-grade mysteries, but I get to stay myself. Turning into Carolyn Keene isn't so much a goal anymore. I mean, The Secret of the Old Clock was published in 1930 which would make me a little older than I'd like to be at this point in my life.

A couple of years ago, I trundled off to an out-of-town writing conference. To justify the hotel cost, I promised myself I’d actually talk to the agent/presenter. Which I eventually did. But only after wimping out enough times that I ended up being the absolute, last person in the room with him. Which I’m sure thrilled him after a long day of speaking. Not.

Anyway, he told me to send my ms when it was done. So, I went home to write and write and write. I finished the ms, then mailed the partial to him in NY. I have it from a reliable source that the agent/presenter opened my envelope, read a few pages, then pushed it across the shiny, conference table, saying, “This one has your name written all over it, Rachel.”

Enter UberAgent Rachel Vater. Who phoned me, said all kinds of nice things, then gently suggested I watch hours and hours of Law and Order and Murder She Wrote. Which I did. Until I realized the mystery part of my book was pretty sucky. So, I beefed it up and sent it back to her. Rachel phoned me again, said all kinds of nice things, then gently suggested I cut 10,000 words and change it from a YA to a MG novel and lower the age of my protagonist. Ouch. Which I did. I sent it back to her. Rachel phoned me again. She said all kinds of nice things. I waited for the suggestion(s). She said more nice things. I waited for the suggestion(s). Then she said the book was ready for submission. Wow.

A month went by. Rachel phoned. We had an offer. A really great offer. For two books. I’m starting to really like these phone calls. Another phone call and she filled me in on the details of the final negotiated offer. It's even better. Now I'm totally loving these phone calls. Yesterday, we accepted a "very nice" deal from Wendy Loggia at Delacorte Press. I'm going to be a published author!

And that is the story of how a geeky girl grew up and got her dream.

Thank you for believing in me, UberAgent, UberNegotiator, UberNicePerson. Thank you for being part of my dream.

29 comments:

Maureen McGowan said...

Congratulations on your sale, Barrie!!! No one deserves it more than you.

Jeaniene Frost said...

Congrats on your sale!

Anonymous said...

This is wonderful news! Congratulations and well done on all your hard work!

David Bridger

Kathy Holmes said...

Congrats, Barrie. Such exciting news - the new Carolyn Keene. :)

KingM said...

I followed this link over from your agent's blog. Congratulations. I, too, have recently signed with an agent and it's an exciting time.

I've got a bunch of young readers in the house, so I'll be sure to keep an eye out for your book when it's published.

Gina Black said...

I just *love* a story with an HEA. UberCongrats!!

D. Robert Pease said...

I too followed the link from your Agent's blog... And must say I teared up reading this post. I don't know you from Eve, but it feels so good to be sitting here at my desk and suddenly feel part (OK very, very small part) of one of the most exciting times in a stranger's life. Congratulations.

Marley Gibson said...

Majorly huge CONGRATS to you, Barrie!!! So happy to hear this news. Hope you celebrate properly!

Best,
Marley = )

stephhale said...

Barrie,
I remember your adorable title from the Stiletto contest. How wonderful that you have finally sold! Congratulations! I can't wait to buy a copy.
I think Rachel is about the nicest person on the planet. A couple of years ago, she sent me the sweetest rejection ever! :)
Steph~
ps- I'll be a bigger geek than you this summer when I'm in the movie theatre watching the Nancy Drew movie all by myself! :)

Sara Hantz said...

Yay, Barrie. That's such a cool story!

HelenKay said...

Congratulations on your sale!! That is a fabulous story with an equally fabulous ending.

Little Willow said...

Welcome to the blogging world, and congratulations on your book sale! :)

Colorado Writer said...

Congrats! I'll be looking for your books!

Authorness said...

Congratulations, Barrie! Great post.

darcy vance said...

Congratulations Barrie! I saw the post on your agent's blog and remembered you from the teenlit board and the stiletto contest. I KNEW this would happen for you. Yay!

Sandy Levin said...

To the 1st Denny's Chick to publish - I bow to your greatness. I laugh at your sparkling characters. I smile at your persistence. You inspire all of us. Congratulations from the bottom of my heart.

Sandy

Wirdald said...

Congratulations! I followed this from Rachel's blog. I'll definitely be picking this up when it comes out. Nancy Drew books were the first books I read and loved, and I've enjoyed YA and MG mysteries ever since. Can't wait for yours books, they sound fun!

Patti said...

I am sooo happy for you Barrie, and totally looking forward to reading your books!!! (I too grew up loving Nancy Drew)

Nicole Brackett said...

Wow, what a fantastic story!!! Just wandered over from Rachel's blog to say CONGRATS!!!

staterka said...

Congratulations and thanks for writing and telling us about it. I'm an aspiring author and reading the story of how you got published has been inspiring. Thanks for sharing!

Dona Sarkar-Mishra said...

Oh Barrie...this is a long time coming...congrats girl!

I remember you from the days of Misty's write a book in 30 days club.

yay!

Wendy Loggia at Delacorte Press said...

And now I get to be part of the dream, because I am the lucky editor who has acquired Barrie's books (and . . . I began my publishing career by answering fan mail and handling reprints of the original Grosset & Dunlap Nancy Drew mysteries!) We'll be a great team, Barrie!
:)
Wendy

Crystal Green's Blog said...

Yay, Barrie! I, too, am I Nancy Drew fan. I just love those old covers and, of course, the mysteries within, which I'm sure yours will rival!

Danita Cahill said...

Barrie, woo-hoo and
BDB all the way to the top, girl!

Lauren Baratz-Logsted said...

Barrie, I am so late to the party here but this is just awesome news. Much succes to you, doll - can't wait to read!

Barrie said...

Wendy, thank you for the wonderful comment! And thank you for acquiring my books. And thank you for being part of my dream. Who knew we had a Nancy Drew history in common. :) I am so thrilled to be on your team!!!
~Barrie

Anonymous said...

Dear Barrie Summy,
I loved I So Don’t Do Mysteries! I loved I how you did the mom daughter team. I could relate to there close connection because, just like Sherry worked as a team, my mom, twin, and I do charity work as a team too. I wouldn’t change a thing about this book. I could picture every detail in this book, I almost felt that I was there. My favorite part was when Sherry and her friends worked as a team to catch a rhino killer.
If I were a movie producer, I would totally make a movie about I So Don’t Do Mysteries. I So Don’t Do Mysteries is an amazing book! I would totally recommend this book to a friend.


From,
Ali

Barrie said...

Dear Ali,

You have totally made my day, my week, my month, my year!

THANK YOU!!

~Barrie

Anonymous said...

now I stay tuned..