Saturday, August 4, 2012

Apologies and Good News


Maybe why I post less frequently?
First the apologies, both for the long silence, and for the fact that some of you (e-mail subscribers, actually) have been receiving repostings from the past.


What happened was that I read an important post about the fact that bloggers can be sued for using clip art and online photos if they aren't actually in the public domain or royalty free. If you haven't already read about this on blog sites or on Facebook, you can go to my friend Rosi Hollinbeck's site, The Write Stuff, where she posted two good sites where you can learn about the hazards and also learn about the free sites you really can count on. 


Because this can be tricky business: Some of the sites I visited in the past looked like they were royalty free, but they only were if you paid a fee to become a member with unlimited downloads, and stuff like that (info I hadn't read closely enough). This past week, instead of blogging, I've been diligently going through old posts to cull out pictures I wasn't sure about. In the process, a couple of times I clicked "post" instead of "update", and my subscribers have been getting reposts from last summer and fall. (Just disregard them, folks. If they aren't the current date, it just means I clicked the wrong icon. You can delete them.) 


Yesterday two friend who subscribe let me know they received my Thanksgiving Post!
Not that I don't have a lot to be thankful for. 


Now we come to the good news. The other reason I haven't been posting for so long is because I've been doing rewrites of my middle grade mystery for an agent who was interested. And a few days ago I got the signed contract! I've posted this on Facebook, but some of you aren't on Facebook, so here is the news: Yes, I have an agent, a very good one. I'm very happy about it. She requested rewrites before we ever signed the contract, but, in the process, she nudged my writing up to a higher level, which will stand me in good stead for the sequel. (This is a mystery series.)


So there you have it: the reason for the long silence, and the reason for surprises out of the blue (if you're a subscriber). I'll be posting more often again from now on, so please stop by. And if you came by today, please leave a comment; I have a few questions:


Did you know about the issue re: public domain pictures? 
Have you been hard at work on your own writing? 
Are any of you at the SCBWI Conference in LA? (If so, I am sooooo envious. I went two years ago, and it was marvelous.) 
http://rosihollinbeckthewritestuff.blogspot.com/

25 comments:

Linda Jackson said...

Congrats! I am SO happy for you! I am amazed at how excited I get when someone I follow gets an agent or sells a manuscript. Guess that goes to show that we writers really are a community. Congrats again! *throws confetti*

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Thanks for your enthusiasm, Linda. I get excited for others too. You're right, it's because we are part of a community; everyone's win is a reminder that "it happens". Thanks for the confetti.

Rosi said...

Such wonderful and well-deserved news. And thanks for the link to my blog!

Catherine A. Winn said...

Congratulations! I,too, have been busy removing pictures. Even some that I took myself of book covers of books I own, just not sure how this is supposed to work so I'm being safe.

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Catherine, on book covers I think you're safe if you go to the book sale site and link back to it, as that only increases their sales. Who can mind that. But I know the feeling of vulnerability. Did a thorough clean-ip. :-)

Ann Best said...

I had to chuckle, Elizabeth, when you said you accidentally re-posted some older posts. I seem to do this kind of mind-blippy thing a lot lately!

I haven't been blogging a lot either because of my daughter's problems, but I did happen on a post about the public domain pictures, and did what you did. I actually deleted all the April A to Z challenge posts because of the many pictures I had on them. Sigh. So now we know.

And last but not least: CONGRATULATIONS on getting an agent. That is awesome. It's so much better, I've decided, to have the support of an agent and/or publisher rather than to go it alone with self publishing. I'm just NOT a marketer!

Good Wishes! Good Wishes!

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Thanks for the good wishes, Ann. I hope your daughter is doing better and that you are able to get into your writing again.

Re: self-publishing: Yes, I self-published a book, too, and had good luck to a certain point in sales: friends, friends of friends, family, etc., and even school visits; but it's hard to keep the momentum going when you really want to be writing. I'd prefer for this next book to be published through a traditional publisher and then still do my part via platform stuff. Cross fingers. . . .

Kelley Lynn said...

YAY!!! Congrats!!! Who is the agent????

Lauren F. Boyd said...

Many congratulations on signing a contract with an agent! As a writer, that's one of the greatest accomplishments you can achieve! I am so excited for you! I can't wait to hear what happens next! Keep up the good work!

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Hi, Kelley, thanks for stopping by and for the YaY.
She's Deborah Carter of Muse Literary Management.

Thanks for the congratulations, Lauren. It's still sinking in.

Victoria Lindstrom said...

Congratulations on the book contract, Elizabeth!!! I'm so excited, and encouraged by your great news. I use photos that I have taken, or my husband has taken, on my blog. Once in a while I'll use a public domain cartoon...I've always been nervous when I even do that!

Tanya Reimer said...

YAY!!! I am so excited for you! Best of luck with the sales now!!!!

Thanks for the site, I will go check out what she has to say.

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Victoria and Tanya, thanks for the good wishes.

Victoria, if you go to my FB timeline (we're friends) you'll see a post that gives eleven free (and trustworthily free) sites.

Tanya, yes, it's exciting, but I have an agent so far, not a publisher, so it's not time to talk of sales. However, please do hold that happy thought.

And, if you're on FB, "Let's be friends". :-)

Lynda R Young said...

Congrats on getting an agent!!! That's wonderful news!!

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Thanks, Lynda!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Congrats on getting an agent. You have worked hard Elizabeth, you deserve this achievement.

J.L. Campbell said...

Hey, Mitty,

Congratulations! That's wonderful news. Wishing you the best of luck in selling the books.

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Thanks, Rachna and Joy,

Yeah, it's been a lot of work -- and more to come. She wants me to write articles to get name recognition, all while working on Book Two and doing some more rewrites of Book One. I love it though. I like those kinds of expectations, although, being mainly a fiction writer, I'm a bit challenged by the article. New learning experience!

Carol Riggs said...

Yes, I have stripped my old blogposts of their photos, too. Only using my own or ones I have permission to, now.

And...I can't recall if I said CONGRATS for getting an agent, on FB, or not!!! So I'm saying it now. I'm happy for you. :)

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Thanks, Carol! I think you did on FB, but thanks again! :-)

Boy, wasn't that a chore, going through old blogs to check? Whew. Glad that's done!

Saumya said...

WOW, congrats! I just stumbled across your blog and what a great post to start on :) Best of luck with your WIP and hope you are celebrating!!

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

Hi, Saumya, welcome to my blog, and thanks for following me. Thanks for the good wishes. I am following your blog now, too. Great site with good tips.

Jayne said...

It's definitely always good to use your own pictures and artwork, unless you definitely can verify where the work comes from, and know what license you can use it under. Copyright laws apply just as much to the internet as they do to traditional publishing, despite the web's ease of access.

Jayne said...

Oh! I'm such a ninny. I also meant to say a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to your good news! In fact I meant to say that first! I'm so happy you have an agent and that your writing is being nudged higher and higher! Brilliant. Good things come to those who work hard at making good things happen!

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