3 Bombshells (Maybe…?) Before Breakfast

1. I’m Going Ahead with Backpacked Pre-Ordering

On July 1st, all going to plan, BackpackedBook.com will go live and within it will be a link to a bookstore. My bookstore. From it you’ll be able to pre-order a signed, personally inscribed copy of Backpacked (or multiple copies, if you’re so inclined – they’ll make great Christmas presents, if I do say so myself) as well signed copies of Mousetrapped and Self-Printed. They’ll cost around €15 (or £13.50 or $22) each, including shipping. Payment will be taken at time of ordering and orders will be shipped on or before September 30th, but hopefully around the 15th. You’ll only be able to pre-order until August 31st. After that if you want a signed copy or a paperback that doesn’t ship from the States… well, you figure it out.

With each shipped order will be an exclusive (and free) sampler – and a proper one, not just A4 pages; you could even say it’s a collectors item (although that’s a bit of a stretch) – of my debut novel, which I’m self-publishing in November.

2. I’m Self-Publishing a Novel in November

Oh, yeah – did I not mention that before? Silly me. Yes, I’m self-publishing a novel. Yes, I said before that I would never ever do that. Yes, I said in a room full of people/witnesses. No, I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I really trust my own decisions and I’m feeling pretty good about this one.

The novel is women’s commercial fiction with a side of corporate satire. I call it The Devil Wears Prada meets Weightwatchers, or The Devil Wears Spanx, if you will. You’ll be hearing a lot more about it in due course.

Does this mean I’m giving up my traditional publishing dreams? Not even a tiny bit. It just means I’m giving them up for this book, which has been on submission since last summer but has been getting that old “We love it but it’s not right for the market here” chestnut again. Self-publishing offers a global market, so let’s see how it gets on there.

My plan after this summer’s self-publishing madness is to go away to a quiet place and write a brand new novel from scratch, and then try to get an agent with that in early 2012.

3. I No Longer Have An Agent

Oh, did I forget to mention that too? My bad. Yes, I am currently agentless.

You may recall that after meeting on Twitter in April 2010 I signed with an agent, and she was absolutely lovely, helped me seriously improve my novel, got my foot in the door with several major publishing house editors and brought loads of other opportunities my way, but she has since had to leave that role for personal reasons and I have decided to start afresh. Unfortunately as I currently only have one finished novel that’s already done the rounds (and that I’ve now decided to put out there myself) and about a third of a book on the desk of an editor, I’m not really in a position to look for a new agent right now.

Once The New Novel is written, polished and ready to go – and, hopefully, my self-publishing sales are something to write home about (my goal is 15,000-20,000 books sold in total by January 2012) – I can get going on the agent search, and perhaps even find one, which would be nice.

So to summarize: I’m going to encourage you to pre-order Backpacked, I’m self-publishing a novel even though I said on here, in a room full of people and in an interview in a national newspaper that I never, ever would and I no longer have representation.

Considerable amount of news for such a little blog post, don’t you think?

8 thoughts on “3 Bombshells (Maybe…?) Before Breakfast

  1. Sally Clements says:

    Yay! Go Catherine! I’ve just got a release date for my next novel (Marrying Cade) which is the 13th July. I love the idea of your bookshop/agent search/novel release! Keep on keeping on!

    • catherineryanhoward says:

      Aw, thank you! I love the idea too. Just hope I love the practicalities as much! 🙂

      Excellent news about your new novel. We’ll both have busy summers. You’ll have to do another guest post for me when it comes out!

  2. dirtywhitecandy says:

    Self-publish a novel? I said I wouldn’t either. How things have changed. I’m aiming for July, with a book that is agented, had great feedback from editors who then said they couldn’t sell it to marketing departments. Glad to see you’re thinking the same way. Power to us!

    • catherineryanhoward says:

      Oh, thank god I’m not the only one jumping off this cliff!

      I once thought that a book that gets an agent gets a publisher but of course that isn’t the case.. and it’s deja vu with the whole ‘we like it… but it’s not right for Ireland/UK’ thing. We have platforms, we know how to sell and we already have successful self-pub non-fiction so… why not?

      I am a little scared though! ;-D

  3. Leah says:

    Good luck Catherine! I’ve just started reading Mousetrapped, which I won from you, so I can get Backpacked on Kindle when it comes out (I hope you’re putting it on Amazon US!). I can’t wait for your debut novel, and I’ll totally be purchasing it for my Kindle, as well!

    Would you be up for being featured on Chick Lit Reviews in November sometime? Maybe writing a guest post or something?

    You’re having a busy year, I’m so thrilled to follow it with you. 😀

    • catherineryanhoward says:

      Hi Leah! Backpacked will of course be on Amazon.com’s Kindle store – that’s where the majority of my sales come from so it’ll probably appear there first! 🙂

      I actually already have Chick Lit Reviews on my list for review copies of the novel. I know you don’t normally do self-published books – and I understand why! – but I was going to send you a copy anyway, on the off chance! 😉 So re: writing a guest post or something, I would LOVE to. I’ll be in touch when I have ARCs ready to send out. Thank you so, so much for offering and I hope you enjoy Mousetrapped!

  4. diane says:

    Wow, lots of big news! I have no doubt though that anyone who has found an agent once can do so again, but like most things in publishing, it’s rarely quick…
    I’m one of those ebook-loving oddities, so I’m holding out for the Kindle version of Backpacked, but I can’t wait to buy that and your novel (which sounds like a great concept!) later this year. x

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