Saturday, 3 November 2012

Debbie Causevic - Our First Hook, Line & Sinker Success Story!

I am so utterly THRILLED to be able to announce the first ever Hook, Line & Sinker success story! Debbie Causevic, who entered the contest with her fabulous YA urban fantasy/romance TUMBLING AFTER, is now represented by Pooja Menon of Kimberley Cameron & Associates!



CONGRATULATIONS, DEBBIE!

Naturally, I wanted to get all the deets from Debbie, so I asked her a few questions...

First of all, please tell us what TUMBLING AFTER is about.


Tumbling After is the first book in a trilogy I am writing titled The Timebender's Curse, a YA urban fantasy/romance. In this first book, 15-year old Louie Weatherby is sent back in time due to a centuries-old curse upon her family. She arrives in 1860 Williamsburg, VA just months prior to the onset of the Civil War. As part of her curse, she is forced to play a role in ensuring that her precarious lineage continues down the haphazard path that ultimately leads to her own existence. During her foray in this disconcerted land, she falls wildly in love with Owen Hayes, a young farrier apprenticed to her family’s mortal enemy. 

Unfortunately, the Timebender responsible for cursing Louie’s family is forcing Louie to play a game she doesn't understand. What she does understand is that unless she consents to becoming a bigger pawn in the Timebender's wicked game, Louie will be parted from Owen as soon as she completes her task, never to see him again. She must ask herself how far she is willing to go to be with the love of her life, and how much she is willing to make others pay in order to do so.

What made you decide to enter Hook, Line & Sinker?

I’ve completed a handful of manuscripts but, at the point that I entered HL&S, I hadn't tried anything aside from straight querying. I decided I needed to break the pattern and become more proactive, so I committed to attending writers' conferences and entering whatever contests I could find online. As luck would have it, Hook, Line, and Sinker was the first step I took in that direction. I'm sure you can understand how completely surreal and awesome it felt not only to make it to Round 3, but also to have connected with Pooja Menon of Kimberley Cameron and Associates, who I have since signed with. These last few weeks have been just completely amazing and I am very thankful to HL&S for giving writers aspiring for publication such an opportunity.

Had you queried TUMBLING AFTER before the contest?

Yes, I completed the manuscript and began querying it in 2011. It generated some interest and I received two requests for partials that ultimately didn’t pan out. One of the agents took six full months deciding and actually offered more compliments than complaints in her rejection. Rather than starting to query again after her reply, I reread the manuscript and more clearly saw the areas that needed improvement. Ultimately, I think sitting on the book for so long while waiting was helpful. Having distanced myself from the writing of it, I was better able to fine tune the manuscript and come up with a stronger product. And as they say, all is well that ends well. I ended up with an agent who feels passionately about this manuscript, which is what I was hoping for all along.

When Pooja made her offer of representation, how did The Call happen?

Before the call, I knew that Pooja was fairly interested in the manuscript. She had requested the first 50 pages and, fairly soon thereafter, the complete manuscript. From what I had read online, I really liked her view on the industry, her progressiveness and her motivation, so I was hopeful. Regarding “the call”, she actually emailed me prior, stating that she'd like to offer me representation and asking to set up a time to talk. That worked out well because I got the jumping and screaming out of my system before having to sound coherent and sane. When we did speak, I liked her feedback on my manuscript and her proposed plan of action, and I felt that our partnership would be a good match. Needless to say, I signed with her shortly afterwards.

What's next for you?

Once I incorporate Pooja’s edits, she intends to submit the manuscript in January after the holidays are over and New York is fully back in action. In the meantime, my job is to build upon my platform as a writer—finally delving into the social media I have long avoided. I will also start work on book 3 of the trilogy, which allows me to resume one of my favorite activities in the world--writing fiction!

****

Isn't she just awesome??

You can get in touch with Debbie in lots of ways...

Email: debbie (at) debbiecausevic (dot) com
twitter: @dcausevic

And please share your comments below!

16 comments:

  1. Congratulations to Debbie and well done for organising such a fabulous contest, Kat.

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    1. Aww, shucks! *blushes* Thanks Suzanne :)

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  2. I don't know why, but this interview really excited me. I loved your answers and the inside information you gave us and the agent/client relationship.
    Thanks, and CONGRATULATIONS!

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    1. Great answers, right? And I love the sound of Tumbling After - can't wait til it's on my bookshelf!

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    2. Wow! All I can say is thank you so much for your kind words all around. It really means a great deal!

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  3. Huge Congratulations, Debbie. I just accepted an offer from Pooja, so I guess that makes us agent-mates :)

    Your story sound absolutely amazing. And I totally agree about the need to be proactive--it's the best way to get out of the slushpile.

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    1. It's always great to connect with your agency siblings! :)

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    3. Congratulations, Pat! That is awesome news for you as well. Like you mentioned in your blog, the most important part of this journey is perseverance along the way. Looking forward to the months ahead!

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  4. How wonderfully exciting for both writer and angent! Congratulations to both of you.

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    1. Isn't it?? Hearing the exciting news of a writer signing with an amazing agent is definitely my favourite part of the contest!

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  5. Ooooh, yay! I saw this on twitter, but I don't think you were there yet then. I will look you up! HUGE CONGRATS!

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  6. Thanks to you all for your words of encouragement and support! It means a great deal.

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  7. I am so excited to read this trilogy. The story concept sounds incredible and I am sure that Ms. Causevic will deliver the goods! Great job and let us know when those books are available!

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  8. Agreed! I'd love to read this story. Please let us know when and where we can find it when it's available. I work with a lot of young adults and I'm always looking for material that gets them excited about reading. Thank you all, for everything you do to promote and keep young adults excited about reading!

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