Um, I think Natalie Lorenzi and I have had somewhat different experiences with the timelines of our debut books.
The publication of Natalie’s FLYING THE DRAGON was pre-poned by nearly a year. That’s right. It moved up from Spring 2013 to Fall 2012. WE’VE GOT A JOB, on the other hand, bounced back and forth between a 2011 and 2012 pub date. Winter 2011? Spring 2012? Guess which won! Yep, it’ll be out in two weeks.
And then, Natalie’s book started making public appearances eight months before its new, earlier pub date. ARCs! The cover of her publisher’s catalog! ALA!! Let’s see. Eight months before my pub date, my indefatigable editor and I were still doing photo research—with captioning and layout still to come. As a result, my galleys/ARCs appeared, oh, about three months pre-publication. (It was featured prominently, however, across a two-page spread just inside the cover of my publisher’s catalog.)
And, did Natalie say that she completed her edits in four months?! Let’s see again. Kathy and I started revising the manuscript in April 2010. And, we went to press in November 2011. That’s 18 months—over four times as long as Natalie and her editor needed for copy edits.
So, what do all these differences in our editorial and publishing processes mean? I’m certainly NOT blaming my editor. On the contrary. I can only conclude that Natalie’s manuscript was near-perfection when she submitted it.
Mine, on the other hand, needed so much fixing, we had to keep pushing back the timeline. (Uh oh. Something just occurred to me. Do you think that editors share stories with each other about their impossible authors and their impossible manuscripts? No editor may want to work with me. Natalie, on the other hand, will have editors begging her to send them her manuscripts, her early drafts, her napkin-scribbles.)
And, the funniest part? She’s worried about what to wear to her debut. Natalie—gorgeous in even blue jeans and fuzzy slippers!
There is one thing we have in common, though. We’re both proud of our books that are about to take their bows. In fact, we’re proud of all our EMUs Debuts books, no matter how long they take from brilliant idea to book-in-hand and no matter what we wear to their debuts. Take a deep bow, EMUs!