Evening deepened at the Florida Christian Writer’s Conference. I sat with a bunch of amazing teen writers, eagerly awaiting Bryan Davis to join us so we could begin our nightly critique sessions. I was a tad bummed because my two appointments (one agent, one editor) hadn’t gone well. They liked the writing, but didn’t think epic fantasy would sell in the CBA.
While waiting, Natasha, one of the other non-teen spec writers, shared her exciting news that Ramona Tucker, co-founder of OakTara, asked her to send her full manuscript. Whoa, an editor that actually wanted fantasy instead of just saying they were looking for it. Cool!
One Problem. Her appointments filled up so fast I didn’t get a meeting with her.
Of course I wouldn’t get to sign up with the only editor actually willing to take a chance on fantasy.
Natasha encouraged me to go see if she had any extra appointments available. I hemmed and hawed for a good fifteen minutes. Why would an editor have “extra” appointments available? I finally decided to check. What could I lose?
I dashed out of the room and over to the appointment table. It took me a few minutes to find her sheet.
She’d added some extra slots.
But they were filled.
And then one of those God moments happened. One where you know that if you were where you are a few minutes later or a few minutes earlier, your life would be different. Miss Tucker happened to see me studying her sheet (I didn’t know she was in the room). She introduced herself and asked me if I’d like to meet with her.
She gave me an early morning appointment (one not slotted on the sheet) and said she looked forward to meeting with me. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to meet with some very friendly people at various conferences, but Miss Tucker blew me away with her professionalism, sincere interest, and smile.
When we sat down in the morning, I made my pitch. She asked for more. That hadn’t happened with other appointments. I gave some more details of the story, then she asked to read a sample. When Miss Tucker asked me to send her the full manuscript, I about fell out of my chair.
I asked for time to edit it completely (about 1/2 was still in rough draft mode). Five months later I sent it off convinced she’d forgotten me. Eleven days ago Albione’s story landed a book contract with OakTara. We’d finally found a home.
The crazy thing is that none of this would’ve happened if I didn’t get out of that chair and check to see if the impossible might be possible. I laugh now because God tends to specialize in doing the impossible, doesn’t He?
And it taught me something. Never think it’s too late. Never give up. Never be afraid to try the impossible. It might change your life.