This is all pretty exciting. When I finished writing The Oblate’s Confession seven years ago and started looking for a publisher, I naively thought the hard part was over. I was in for a rude awakening. After years spent sending out query letters and adding untold feet to our local dump in the form of rejection letters from publishers, I was pretty much ready to give up. People urged me to self-publish but that sounded like surrender. Then, early this spring, Ron Sauder of Secant Publishing read a poem of mine published in The Delmarva Review and approached me about doing a book. I sent him my manuscript; he sent me a healthy cash advance and a generous contract; and the rest–one hopes–is history.
It’s an interesting lesson you learn from an experience like this. On the one hand, it seems that you should never give up. Somehow, somewhere out there, a hero like Ron may be hiding in the wings waiting to leap out when you least expect it to save the day. On the other hand, I did perform due diligence when I researched the world of publishing … and the news is not good. There are thousands upon thousands of writers out there trying desperately to get published. In a market with a limited number of publishing firms, most of which are looking primarily for the blockbuster that will carry them, limping, through just one more year, the odds of any one writer–regardless of worth–finding someone to publish his or her work–regardless of caliber–may well be astronomical. I am very lucky, and very thankful, that Ron Sauder appeared when he did. I hope and pray that The Oblate’s Confession will find a large appreciative audience to justify his faith in it. My mom thinks it’s great. My wife thinks it’s great. Now it’s up to a whole lot of people I will probably never meet to decide if Ron’s conviction and the years I spent researching and then writing The Oblate’s Confession were worthwhile. Once again, I’m hoping against long odds that not just someone but a whole lot of someones will leap from the wings to save the day by buying my book. Whoever you are out there, wherever you are, I wish you Godspeed.