I’m very happy to welcome Ceci Giltenan to my blog today. I’m also very happy to congratulate her on the publication of her first book, Highland Solution! Check out her gorgeous cover. Publishing is one of those incredibly happy, and incredibly scary times as Ceci shares with us today.
Years ago I wrote a children’s book (unpublished) with my son, who was eight at the time. In the book a genie granted the proverbial three wishes to a character named Henry who was afraid to accept them. Henry believed that wishes were dangerous things that might have unexpected consequences if granted suddenly. My son and I thought it was funny. Everyone has wishes and dreams; who doesn’t want them to come true? While some dreams are pure fantasy (I doubt that I will ever travel back in time unless I meet a genie), others are real and achievable.
Although I became a nurse and eventually a medical writer, my fondest desire was to write romance. After years of dreaming, I finally did it. Writing the story was like taking a fantasy vacation to medieval Scotland. Better yet it was like being a genie and taking a vacation to medieval Scotland because I could control every detail. There would be no lost luggage unless it forwarded the plot.
Plucking up the courage to seek a publisher was not quite as pleasant. Offering a little piece of yourself to a stranger who can snuff out your dream with a simple “no thank you” or worse, is daunting. To my surprise and delight, Champagne Books offered me a contract last November. Still, I started to get a glimpse of why Henry worried. The work had only just started.
The editing process was challenging but my editor, Diane Badzinski, could not have been more helpful. I learned more than I ever thought possible about crafting a novel from her. I received the cover art in July and the release date was set for September. My dream was finally coming true! After a brief celebration, I realized that I had no clue what came next. This is exactly what Henry was worried about, and now I was worried too. I was offered great advice by other authors but they spoke a language that I didn’t understand. I speak early drug development, what is a blog tour?
Finally, I met Donna MacMeans online and she took pity, explaining the jargon to me and making some concrete suggestions. If I thought I was out of the woods I was mistaken, because those concrete suggestions involved asking people to let me be a guest on their blogs. Not just ordinary people mind you, famous people. Authors who I admire like Laurin Wittig and Sue-Ellen Welfonder whose books I read and love. I was scared spitless. This was much harder than submitting a proposal to a faceless publisher had been. My dream was morphing into a nightmare and Henry was saying “I told you so,” in my head so loudly I could barely focus.
However, fear and courage are brothers and on the cusp of my dream coming true, I could not afford to run and hide. I put on my big girl panties, told Henry to shut up and sent some emails. Thankfully, as it turns out many of these people have kind hearts and were more than willing to help. Hmm, I guess the first clue should have been that they write romances. Don’t get me wrong, everyone doesn’t say yes, and some people don’t even answer, but I have not died of embarrassment yet. I love “happy endings” that is why I love romance novels. However, thanks to Henry, I am learning that even “happy endings” frequently aren’t really the end, but rather the bridge to a new chapter.
Meet Ceci Giltenan
Ceci’s sixth grade class predicted that she would be an author. “But I want to be a nurse!” she said, in her typically bossy style. As it turns out, she became both. She started her career as an oncology nurse at a leading research hospital, and eventually became a successful medical writer. In 1991 she married a young Irish carpenter who she met at a friend’s wedding. They raised their family in central New Jersey and now with their youngest off to college, Ceci is breaking away from “primary efficacy endpoints” and writing a few “happily ever after’s.”
Laird Niall MacIan needs Lady Katherine Ruthven’s dowry to relieve his clan’s crushing debt but he has no intention of giving her his heart in the bargain.
Niall MacIan, a Highland laird, desperately needs funds to save his impoverished clan. Lady Katherine Ruthven, a lowland heiress, is rumored to be “unmarriageable” and her uncle hopes to be granted her title and lands when the king sends her to a convent. King David II anxious to strengthen his alliances sees a solution that will give Ruthven the title he wants, and MacIan the money he needs. Laird MacIan will receive Lady Katherine’s hand along with her substantial dowry and her uncle will receive her lands and title.
Lady Katherine must forfeit everything in exchange for a husband who does not want to be married and believes all women to be self-centered and deceitful. Can the lovely and gentle Katherine mend his heart and build a life with him or will he allow the treachery of others to destroy them?
Read an excerpt of Highland Solution at http://cecigiltenan.com/excerpts/
Highland Solution is available at www.champagnebooks.com and other retailers of electronic media.
Thanks, Ceci, for a great look at your publishing journey and I wish you great success with your new book!