Fall Fantasy Author Series: T. Michelle Nelson / @TMichelleNelson

On Getting Published

Stephanie, thanks so much for having me as a guest blogger. [SK: You’re welcome! Thanks for being here today!]

My blog tour is starting off and I’ve had to do quite a few of these types of things and I never really know what to write.  I decided today I’m going to talk about the one thing that people ask me about the most – getting published, how it came to fruition for me and what it’s like.

To be perfectly honest, I’ve never thought of myself as a writer. I still don’t. I have fun writing, and when it’s no longer fun, I’ll quit. Of course, I just finished the second Lily Drake book, so it looks like that may be a long time off.  I’m currently having a blast. Anyway, back to my point, I don’t really think of myself as a “writer” so much as someone who enjoys writing.  So, that being said, I wasn’t super familiar with the whole process that it takes to get published when this book started out.  In fact, I had no real intentions of submitting it for anything until I had finished writing it.

I sent the sucker out to a few publishers, and on Valentine’s Day, a couple weeks later, Inkspell Publishing had offered me a contract. I’m painfully aware that it isn’t normally that easy for most. In fact, after I signed with Inkspell I got a horrible rejection letter from another publisher who informed me that no one would ever want to read about a thirty-five year old single mom in a vampire book. Of course, I happen to know about a million moms who read Twilight and figured they’d definitely appreciate something a little more age appropriate for themselves.  Anyway, I digress, back to getting the contract… Of course, I jumped up and down, did the cabbage patch across my living room and signed it.  Then the hard work really began.

I didn’t have a website.  I didn’t have social media sites for the book.  I didn’t have anything except for a manuscript that needed editing. This is the part no one mentions.  The easy part of the book is writing it.  The really sucky part comes afterwards. 

Edits were intense.  It seemed every time I opened the file of my manuscript from my editor there were more corrections than before. All the while I also needed to write a synopsis, which proved to be almost impossible. You can imagine condensing 92,000 words into a couple of paragraphs.  Obviously, I’m long-winded!  But then I had to come up with a one-line blurb.  Just one sentence. To describe the entire book somehow. Yeah, right. 

I haven’t even gone into the whole marketing, publicity, and promotions or the fact that every night for months on end until the wee hours of the morning I worked on something. Yet, somehow with the help of some fabulous people this book saw the light of day and is now available.

Let me tell you, I sure learned my lesson. Writing a book and getting it published is stressful, time-consuming and almost drove me to insanity. So what did I do?  I wrote another.

About the Book

The life of a single mother is never easy, but Lily Drake is about to be put to the test.  PTA meetings, a full time job and raising her young son is enough to fill her plate, but when a friend sets her up on a blind date, Lily’s life spins out of control. Mistaking a vampire for her suitor, Lily finds herself thrown into a world where her decisions not only affect her and her young son’s lives, but also could turn the tides in a battle between warring vampires.

Maintaining a balance between Lily’s role as a doting mother and the dark secret society of vampires is no easy task, but when she finds herself in love with two of the vampires, choosing between humanity and immortality seems to be the easiest decision of all.  How will Lily find time to check homework, choose between two handsome vampire cousins and still have time to dispose of the bodies? 

The Life and Death of Lily Drake is not your typical vampire love story. It’s a tale about the humorous mistakes a woman makes simply trying to survive not only life, but the dating scene.  How will Lily manage working full-time, taking care of her young son and fighting the undead at every turn?
Lily will have to figure it out, but who better to save the world than a mom?

This book will knock your socks off! Sexy, funny, and scary blended into one exceptional story,” says HOLLYWOOD EVER AFTER and MEDUSA: A LOVE STORY author, Sasha Summers.   

"Fans of Charlaine Harris and TRUE BLOOD will find much to enjoy in Michelle Nelson's cracking, sanguine debut. Dark, funny, audacious and written with a confidence that belies this as her first effort, LIFE AND DEATH OF LILY DRAKE dispenses with the idea that vampires are pasty, maudlin, emo-types and restores them to all their brutal bloodthirsty glory. And in terms of heroines to root for, I daresay Lily Drake gives poor 'ol Sookie a run for her money." – Kealan Patrick Burke, Bram Stoker Award-Winning author of THE TURTLE BOY and KIN.

Buy the Book

Barnes & Noble


Inkspell Publishing

About the Author

When T. Michelle Nelson was a little girl she told people she was going to be a skeleton when she grew up. Most people assumed she confused the question with "What do you want to be for Halloween?" She doesn't remember, but thinks it's debatable either way. With her love of all things monster and horror, it's possible she actually did want to grow up to be a skeleton.  Years later, little has changed.  T. Michelle still loves her monsters, but now she writes about them.  

Originally from Western Kentucky, T. Michelle is a graduate of Murray State University.  She now resides in picturesque Mount Vernon, Ohio, which is also the setting of her novel, The Life and Death of Lily Drake. When she isn't vicariously living through her characters, T. Michelle Nelson is a not-so-mild-mannered mother, semi-decent baker and lousy volleyball player.




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