Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Crooked and Twisty Road

By Margaret Daley

I sold my first book in 1980 and thought I was set (for life). Back then there was no RWA or ACFW, and I didn’t really know the realities for writers and the publishing industry. It is amazing how naïve I was. Selling my second book was a struggle. By the time I sold my fourth one, I thought I was getting into a rhythm that would keep on going like the Energizer Bunny. Another naïve thought of mine. When I hit my twentieth book, I hit a brick wall. I didn’t sell anything for eight years. I could have given up and almost did several times but something kept me going. Then in 1996 I sold a book that started my road back to publication. In 2000 I sold to Steeple Hill Love Inspired and found the Christian fiction market, which was a perfect fit for me. If I had given up during that eight years, I wouldn’t have gone on to sell forty-six more book. My tip to others is don’t give up even during those downturns if you truly want to be a writer.

I couldn't resist putting up this photo I took when I was in San Francisco two years ago. Talk about a crooked street! It was a series of switchbacks--like my writing career.


  1. Thanks Margaret, I needed to read this today. Perfect timing.

  2. Margaret, your and my stories are similar. I sold 10 books, then ran into a wall. It was five years without a book. But God gently redirected me into the Christian market. And I am thankful He brought me to where I am now.

  3. Thanks for sharing your struggles, Margaret. I know it's taken me a few years just to write a well-crafted book. It may take a few more to write a book that fits with a publisher, but I'm willing to put the time in.

    For other writers like me, who didn't nail it on their first, second, or sixth book, it's great to know perseverance pays off.

    By the way, I just read Kit Wilkinson's article about mentoring in the new RWR, where she discussed the help you've been to her. It really impressed me. You're a special person. Congratulations on your success!

  4. I'm glad it help, Pamela.
    Leann, God didn't gently redirect me. The first couple of nudges didn't get through. He shoved me and I'm so glad He did.
    Jill, thank you. Kit is such a neat lady--also a very good writer.

  5. Loved the post, Margaret! It's always nice to hear different publishing stories. Even though sometimes it's hard to be patient (I'm talking about me!), everything happens in God's perfect timing.


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