The Scribe’s Arcanum:
Anatomy of a First Sale—Part 5: The Aftermath
I had spent six years working toward my first short story sale, and in that time, many things in my life had changed. Many things were about to change. One of the biggest: I was now a paid published author.
In this day and age of self-publishing, being accepted and paid by an editor is a distinction worth mentioning. Although, there’s nothing wrong with going the indie route, I’ve done it myself, it’s just a different situation.
The sale also meant I could keep my HWA affiliate member status. I had completed a huge goal, and I felt like I was on a roll.
Before making my first sale, I had committed myself to researching the opening of a small business. Of course, as soon as I made that decision, I ended up making my first fiction sale. In hindsite, I probably should have marshaled all my efforts into my writing career. Instead, I put most of my time resources into pursuing a business while also earning a Bachelor’s degree. With all that, we also visited California and Florida. Yes, 2006 was a very busy year!!!
Even so, I began attending author signings and conventions to jumpstart my networking. Feeling like a real writer for the first time allowed me to connect with other writers without feeling so much like a poser.
One of the signings I attended was of a local writer who had had success in both the mass market and the small press. He told me that his first small press book had earned him an advance of $250 and seemed genuinely impressed that my first short fiction sale had earned me twice as much. It was certainly a great confidence booster.
I also attended the Northeastern Writers Conference (NECON), a cozy and informal Rhode Island convention where the convention goers are welcoming and treat you like family.
An amazing beginning, but it wasn’t going to get any easier. In the next installment, I’ll tell you what it took to make my second sale and how it was a sale that almost never happened.
See you next time.