Friday, April 2, 2010

Pay it Forward: Author Interview with Shelli Johannes-Wells

Edited to add: sorry this posted a bit late--I thought I scheduled it, but I guess not!
Everyone has a different path to publication. This week, I'm featuring authors on the way: authors who have found their agents or their publishers and are in the homestretch towards reaching their dreams. Their stories are each different--but they are all inspiring. By showing you how THEY did it, I hope you remember that YOU can, too!
This week has been great! Today, for the last interview, I'm featuring Shelli Johannes-Wells,
an author I'm sure you all know from her super-popular Market My Words blog. Shelli's represented by Alyssa Eisner Henkin of Trident Media Group. In addition to writing for teens and tweens, Shelli is also a pro at marketing.

Tell us about your book.
Tween Paranormal – On the Bright Side

After dying in a car accident and witnessing her own funeral, Gabby becomes a 14 year old Bright-in-Training (BIT) and Transfers up to Cirrus, where SkyFones, SkyPods, and InnerNets are all the rage. As if her death isn’t bad enough, Gabby is assigned to protect her school rival, Angela Black, who is now dating her lifetime crush, Michael.

As Gabby moves through her Bright Training, she is tortured by leaving her family behind and the possibility of losing her first love forever. Instead of protecting Angela as pledged, Gabby goes on probation for illegally sabotaging her. In a desperate attempt to interfere, Gabby triggers a series of “death-changing” events and learns what happens when you hate someone to death.

Can you tell us a little bit about your road to publication?
I wrote and tried to sell a fairy book in 2005. It went to acquisitions twice but did not make it. I shelved that book and started an ecoYA. Last fall I went on submission. A few agents sent back longer rejection letters with feedback that was similar. Basically, I had to change the entire plot. I spent 5 months doing that and requeried those 3 agents asking if I could resubmit. In addition, I told them about my Tween angel book I was working on. 2 months later I had several offers for representation. Alyssa was one of the 3 that had allowed me to resubmit my manuscript after the rewrite. We are currently subbing .

Here is a more in depth look at my journey to getting an agent.

Was there ever a time you felt like giving up? Why didn't you?
Everyday. I don’t because I love to write. It’s that simple.

Thank you, Shelli! You can find Shelli online at her blog or website.

This week of interviews is being hosted by Elana Johnson, and several other bloggers are jumping on the bandwagon, including:
 Be sure to check them all out for inspiring, first-hand stories of authors on the verge of publication!
Post a Comment