Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Team Huddle

So yesterday was one of those big moments in the life of a book . . . a first official meeting between author and editors. A three-way conference call between the Chicago area and South Central Texas--to discuss book revisions. I like thinking of this as a Team Huddle. Because, of course, that's what it takes to produce a book, a team effort. Writer, agent, editors, publisher, contract folks, marketing, sales, cover designers, printers . . . and even more. But when I picked up the phone in my office yesterday afternoon, I was concerned with only one basic truth--they'd read The Healer's Heart. And I was going to hear what they thought of it. Can you spell ANGST? Let's put it this way:

If you're a Top Chef fan, picture the judging team all tasting your Macadamia Nut Gazpacho with Pan Roasted Fish. And then think of that scene in the movie "Big," where Tom Hanks tastes the caviar, makes a face, spits it into his napkin . . . and then frantically scrapes the remaining bits off his tongue. Yes, these things DO all go through an author's mind. Okay, now I've mixed my metaphors into sports goulash, but I think you get the picture of the importance of this conference call.

And (drum roll)--I'm very pleased to say--no one had to scrape their tongues after reading my book! In fact, they really liked it. And, best of all, the editors were both enthusiastic and helpful in brainstorming additions/clarifications that will make this medical drama even more exciting. An author's dream: editors who "get" your work and want to lend their expertise to take it to an even higher level. And, speaking of expertise, the third person on the conference call (besides acquiring editor Jan Stob and moi) was Tyndale editor Lorie Popp. She's edited books for the bestselling megastars like Karen Kingsbury and Angela Hunt, and . . . she'll be editing my book! Trust me, the rise of goose bumps nearly lifted me out of my office chair. I'm honored.

So, the Team Huddle was great. The end result was that I got some awesome suggestions to tinker with on revisions--a new title being mulled over--a warm welcome, an awesome new editor . . . and a strong sense that this new publishing "home" is right where God wants me. Priceless.

Oh, if you're trying to figure out who's playing me in the team photo above, that would be number 5 without a doubt. The one with dust on her back pockets (from sliding in well ahead of deadline)--and a teeny smudge of Macadamia Gazpacho on her jersey.

Go Team!

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