It's so perfect to have Diana Orgain blogging for me for debut week, not only because her first novel, BUNDLE OF TROUBLE, came out just last year, but because the second, MOTHERHOOD IS MURDER, is releasing today from Berkley Prime Crime! Diana is a perfect example of how the query process works. In fact, her letter is one I often use in my talks to illustrate that point. BUNDLE OF TROUBLE was originally entitled POSTPARTUM DETECTIVE. She pretty much had me at the title. The voice and the humor clinched it. And now...
Debut Week continues with Diana Orgain
Thank you to Lucienne for allowing me to participate in her anniversary blog this week. I hear she is celebrating 17 years in the business – I didn’t know you could start a career at 12 – but there you go! Bravo Lucienne.
We’re celebrating debuts and new beginnings. My new novel is MOTHERHOOD IS MURDER is being released on March 2nd, it’s the second book in the Maternal Instincts Mystery Series. BUNDLE OF TROUBLE was released last summer and was my debut novel. I wanted to share a bit about the experience with you and my top 5 lessons learned from the ride.
1. Listen to your agent. Okay, you might think I posted that because this is my agent’s blog – but you’d be wrong. I have found that my agent has great industry advice. After all, she has 17 years experience but even more important than that she has my interest in mind. When I win, she wins.
2. Don’t listen to people who tell you “should” do something if you don’t like doing what they’re telling saying you “should” do. Examples: twitter, facebook, blogging, touring - my rule is you have to enjoy what you’re doing or it’s simply not worth your time. There are too many options of things to do especially regarding promotion for you to settle on something you don’t enjoy simply because someone told you it’s the thing to do.
3. You will be surprised by things that surprise you! I had imagined many time what holding my novel in print would feel like. What surprised me were the things that I hadn’t anticipated – like a great review from Publisher’s Weekly or even more pleasant was the warm reception my novel received from friends, acquaintances and everyday readers. I got fan mail! Me? Really?
4. Write First: Marketing your novel can take a lot of time, don’t lose site of the entire reason you are spending time marketing – it’s about your writing. Make that your first priority.
5. It gets better (and easier). A debut is stressful because it’s the unknown. You don’t know what to expect. Once the novel is out there you begin to understand that although you have accomplished one major milestone in your life a new journey is just beginning. You have begun your journey as a published author. And as sweet as seeing your first book in print is, believe me, it’s even sweeter to see the second book with the page “Also Written by” followed by your name.
Here’s to everyone debuting this year – enjoy the ride!
About the Author
Diana Orgain holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University with a minor in acting. Diana’s plays have been produced at San Francisco State University, at GreenHouse Productions, and PlayGround in San Francisco. She is the author of BUNDLE OF TROUBLE and MOTHERHOOD IS MURDER. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and their children.
For a vlog on this month's cozy mystery releases from Berkley Prime Crime, click here.