I remember the day I googled “TK City Name*” and an article of a missing person, my editor, was the first hit.
But let me start from the beginning…
I was at Camp Winshape with my best friend, Mikayla Farr. It was a summer camp in Georgia for 2-weeks. I’m from Michigan so packing had to be strategic. I packed 2 books that I thought would keep me occupied during our ‘quiet time’ after lunch each day. Well, I finished both books in about 4 days. Wanting to do something other than take a nap, I decided to buy a notebook and pen and write.
I filled the entire notebook by the end of camp.
It was a concoction of mini stories, character names, and conversations.
When I got home from camp, I was determined to re-write it all on my computer. But, high school started and priorities changed and the notebook fell off my radar.
Flash forward 4 years
and I found the notebook spring cleaning my room.
Smiling I flipped through some of the pages trying to recall 14 year old Samantha and where she was mentally and physically when writing on the pages. At this point in time, I was graduating High School about to start my College journey. I tucked the notebook away for safekeeping and thought about what it would be like to make something of it.
History repeated itself and it stayed tucked away for a few more years…
I think subconsciously, I wasn’t ready yet. I wasn’t ready to transfer the pages of my purple notebook onto my laptop.
The idea terrified me.
It was one thing to have my chicken scratch in a purple notebook tucked away in my closet, but another thing to have it written in black and white on my laptop monitor. It made my writing feel more…
April 26th, 2016
The day that marks when I took a leap and reached out to editors to go down the path of publishing my first novel.
Recalling this, I remember my very close friend Julie encouraging me to do research and find editors. I told her I’d look for someone when I’m 30 and she questioned why I’d wait so long for something I wanted right now.
So, I found 5 editors and sent a lengthy email about how I am a first time writer, I was trying to get more information, and I was just doing this for fun not as a career.
3 of the 5 responsed.
1 of them was an automated email that they were not taking new clients…next.
The other 2 wrote back that they were open to seeing my piece and told me a little about themselves. The way TK wrote, I could just feel their energy.
I knew I had to choose TK as my editor.
August 7th, 2017
was the last email I got from TK.
I forgot to say now is the time for you to put front matter into the book. Please insert the title page, etc. before you send it back. Then poof! Just like that, it’ll be ready to publish.
I. WAS. ESTATIC.
You would not believe how fast I got that finished. I expected a reply within seconds. But, I never got one.
I gave TK the benefit of the doubt. It was summer TK likely had activities, end of the year parties, etc. etc.
I was going into my last year of college, so I had other thoughts in the forefront of my mind.
A week went by, I sent a follow up email — technology is wonky sometimes, maybe you didn’t get this email but…
A month went by, at this point I was beside myself.
Did I really just get played?
This person really played the long game if that was the case.
In all honesty, it wasn’t about the money.
Sure, I calculated how many hours I’d have to work to make up the money I spent on this endeavor. (Spoiler Alert: Overtime is nice)
But, the only thing I could think of was how embarrassed I was that I was so close to something that I had invested my whole heart into and it all fell apart.
Hockey season started and I was really fired up. (GO WINGS!)
In the back of my head, I only thought about my book sitting in our seats.
Every goal, every power play, every fight reminded me of my book and how I desperately wanted to gain back the courage to try it again.
Third time is a charm, right?
I tried TK one last time. Email/Phone Call/Text Message.
Then, I decided to do what any millennial person would do: Google.
I knew very little about TK. Only their name and the city they resided.
And there it was, in black and white:
Person Missing from * since August.
I was sitting in my dad’s office, stunned. I couldn’t breathe, and I uncontrollably started bawling my eyes out. My person. The one who I shared my most personal creative thoughts with was gone.
Then poof! Just like that….
This moment changed everything for me.
I had already decided prior to finding out about TK that I was going to find a way to publish my book. But now, I had even more of a reason to go forward full speed ahead with publishing Behind The Net. Because now I had two people to do it for: myself and TK.
January 1, 2019
I published my book.