The Debs are thrilled to welcome Christie Craig with a story sure to inspire you to get your butt back in the share this year. She’s also giving away a FREE t-shirt to a random commenter so be sure to leave us a note!
I remember it like it was just last year.
Oh…wait, it was last year.
Oddly enough, sometimes it seems like yesterday and other times it seems like decades have passed.
It came in the morning. Or at least I like to think it was the morning, because I was still in my PJs. But seriously, it could have been around noon (okay even as late as one or two, but don’t tell anyone.) Anyway, when the phone rang, I was standing by my desk, totally styling in my favorite faded nightshirt, a nightshirt past the hole-ly stage, but too soft to toss away. And on the shirt were the words “Go Ahead, Bite Me, I’m Tough” printed on the front.
The voice came on the line. “Christie?” It was my agent. I recognized her accent—New Jersey—a nice voice, not that thick Jersey accent, but you know how some people have that too-peppy voice? Well, she definitely doesn’t have that problem. I joke her about her I’m-here-to-console-you tone. And yeah, she’s consoled me through a few rejections, so I’m not complaining; I just love to tease her. (Of course, you need to keep in mind, that I’m from Alabama, and have added a Texan twang to my deep-southern drawl, so I’m sure she has plenty to say about my accent and I’m giving her a big plate of ammunition.)
“Are you sitting down?” she asked.
My heart dropped and landed somewhere around the bladder area. (Too much coffee.) But wait! Was that a bit of excitement I heard in her voice? Or had I imagined it? I knew that Dorchester had been looking at a few of my manuscripts. Could it really have happened? Hey, I’d only been working for six years, put in seventy hours a week, written eight books, completed six proposals, placed in over fifty contests, and done everything short of blackmailing editors to sell another book. Could it really be that easy?
I clutched the phone tighter and somehow I managed to reposition my heart off my bladder, only the heart was now fluttering like a bird wanting to escape my chest.
Being the eternal optimist, I let my hope soar. “I’ve worked my butt off,” I told my agent, “I can take this news standing up. I sold a book, didn’t I?”
There was this pause, one of those pregnant ones, like nine months pregnant. Finally my agent answers, “No.”
Still standing, the soaring hope crashed dead at my feet, I felt disappointment bite a big chunk out of my butt. Sure, my nightshirt claimed I’m tough, but honestly, that’s a big freaking lie. I also have one that claims I’m the sexiest woman alive, and you know that’s not true.
I sigh. “We tried, huh?” And I try to sound okay, but seriously I’m thinking about giving up writing and taking up collecting potato chips that look like ex presidents.
“No, you don’t get it,” she added, and her consoling tone was gone. That really was excitement I heard in her voice. “You didn’t sell a book. You sold four.”
“Oh, chit,” I told her. “I need to sit down.”
I did sit down. And when my husband came home that afternoon, I was still sitting, still wearing my “Go Ahead, Bite Me, I’m Tough,“ nightshirt. He took one look at me, pulled me out of my chair, wrapped his arms around me and this tough girl literally cried with joy on his shoulder. Six years, seventy hours a week, eight books, six proposals, fifty contest finals, and down to seriously considering blackmail, well, that will do it to a girl.
Okay, that’s “my call” story. But my happy ending gets even happier. Just last month, Dorchester published my first Single Title, Divorced, Desperate and Delicious. It has gotten great reviews, hit some bestsellers list and has been taken back for a second printing. I’m dancing on clouds of excitement, and I’m hoping my “Call” story offers everyone a little bit of inspiration. I don’t care if you’re trying to sell a book, get pregnant, or find the faces of ex-president s in a bag of potato chips, if you want it, go for it, and never . . . ever give up. I’m here to testify that dreams do come true. Yes, you might have to take a few bites of disappointment in the rear, but if you just keep going, you too will realize your dream. (Oh, I still have a few of those blackmail ideas if you need to borrow them.)
Thank you, Debutant Gals, for asking me to guest blog. I’d love to hear from everyone. And just to offer a bit of incentive, I’ll be giving away a Sexy, Suspenseful and Seriously Funny—Books by Christie Craig nightshirt.
19 Replies to “The Call by Guest Deb Christie Craig”
Wow, Christie, what a very inspiring story and a big reminder to never give up! Thanks so much for sharing. I’m hoping that someday, I too can be an “overnight success”. 😉
Yes, being an overnight success takes years! I love reading these stories.
Thanks for posting. I’m living proof of the power of perservance!! Best of luck with becoming an “overnight success”!
I love these stories, too!
Thanks for stopping by.
Hi Christie! Welcome to the Ball and thanks for joining us! I loved your story and of course you always crack me up! It’s awesome that things came through for you in such a grand way!
Who would look for faces of ex presidents in potato chips. … Elvis is the way to go. 😉
Great story Christie. 🙂
Thank you so much for inviting me to join you and the rest of the Debs at the Ball! I’m stil dancing on clouds with excitement over how everything turned out.
Yep. Finding the face of Elvis on a potato chip is probably a much better ambition. He was the king, after all. LOL.
Thanks for dropping by.
I am always amazed about how much of writing success is due to not giving up. Congrats!
Thanks for the congrats, and I agree. Perservance is a key ingredient in a writer’s success – at least it seems that way to me.
Thanks so much for coming, Christie! I actually remember you from one of the chick lit loops a few years back and you were always so funny, so generous to your fellow writers. I’m so thrilled you broke through in such a big way and I can’t wait to read your books.
Thanks so much for having me here at the Ball and for those kind words. (BTW, I dropped that check in the mail–you know, the check for the agreed-upon amount in bribe money for saying such nice things about me.)
I remember that chick lit chapter, too, and a lot of the great discussions we had there. You know, one of the things I love most about this business, other than being able to write the kind of books I love to read is being able to help other writers. That’s why I’m really proud of the how-to book I co-authored with Faye Hughes – it’s called THE EVERYTHING GUIDE TO WRITING A ROMANCE NOVEL, and it’ll be out in September through Adams Media. Thanks for letting me plug it!
I think the system ate my last comment, so I’m reposting it. Sorry if it’s a double post.
Thank you so much for having me here at the Ball today. I’ve had a blast.
You’re a wonderful example, Christie, of “good things come to those who wait…and never give up.” Congratulations!
Only 4? Were you disappointed it wasn’t 6? Ah, hell, 4 isn’t a failure.
Thanks for sharing your great story — another example of “The harder you work, the luckier you get.”
We’re so happy you joined us today — and best of luck to you — you deserve it!
sounds like great story!!!!!
What a wonderful, inspiring story! Congratulations…determination truly does pay off!!
I hope I’m not ruining the flow of things, but my goal when I woke up this morning was to connect with other women writers. I read about this site in a writer’s magazine (not sure if I can name it here) and found just the inspiration I needed! I laughed and cried and what I know to be true— one day I WILL have my own “the call” story to share. Thanks!
and PS I’m glad I’m not the only one who stays in my PJ’s until 2pm 🙂
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