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  • ruthmonsell

My 12 Year Journey to Publication!

Updated: Jan 19

ENTRY II - Jan. 16:


Well, I'm not sure I have those moves, but I have that emotion!

It's been a long time coming.

Way back in November of 2019, after months of sending out query letters and proposals and garnering the first five readers of my manuscript from among erudite friends and associates, I rather suddenly had not one, but TWO publishers who wanted to publish my biography of Frances! I was pretty thrilled.

After much deliberation and research into both, and consultation with a wonderfully supportive woman who lived only a mile from me, a former publisher herself, I chose the one who was based in Maine.

That decision was made not so much because of the publisher's proximity to home, but because Frances considered the historic family saltwater farm in Newcastle her "one true home," the place she always came back to. It was her refuge from the stress of Albany and then Washington. And more people know about the legacy of the first woman cabinet member in Maine than anywhere else, thanks to the Frances Perkins Center, their Main Street information center, and their tours.

It wasn't until a couple of years later that, after working long and hard to fulfill all the requests and expectations of the Maine publisher, I realized I had made the wrong choice.

After announcing numerous near-future publication dates between 2020 and 2022, and letting them lapse without even offering me a reason, I was forced to take legal steps to sever the contract. It had been broken already when the company failed to publish within the one year stipulated.

To those of you who've followed my FP Facebook page from the start, I appreciate enormously your loyalty. It was very frustrating and embarrassing to announce three consecutive publication dates that came and went with nothing happening! I've always been a bit too trusting of the word of others, as I personally never make promises I can't keep.

Miraculously, when I went back to Histria Books in 2022 to ask if they might still have an interest, they quite quickly said YES! The road I've traveled with them for the past 14 months as been far smoother. And what was once mandated to be marketed as a paperback for middle schoolers is now, as originally intended, a hardback book for teens and adults.

Given the 4 year wait, I think it's only appropriate to celebrate next spring with a gala book launch party! Hope to see YOU there. Leave your email so you can be guaranteed of an invite.

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