Madhulika, an Indian author and poet whose debut short story, “The One Night Affair and Other Stories” has been loved by readers. She has also contributed stories to various anthologies. Now she is back with her second book, “Corporate Love Tadka”. She shares her path to getting published with Storizen Magazine. Read on in her own words:
Having published my second book – a novel – by Juggernaut Books perhaps has given me some experience in the path towards publishing.
As a first-time author, one feels like a “Jhansi-ki-rani” having made to the list of published authors and holding your book in your hand feels nothing less than holding a Wimbledon Trophy, however, the initial rush hormones sort of fizz down soon enough and you understand you’ve just entered a world where people are not that impressed when you say “I’m an author” rather you’ll find people who are proud to say ‘I do not read” and you realize the journey has only just begun.
This is exactly what I felt after having my first book – a short-story collection — out. By the sixth month people were asking me about my plans to write my next, which was good as that meant they still wanted me to write. That’s when I stated to pen my second – a novel.
After the initial draft, I sent it to my then agent, who at that point in time had somehow made me feel that I cannot make it into the writing world without an agent and being outside the country I believed him. Well let me clarify the myth — You can! – It is possible to make it without an agent, unless of course you are entering the highly sophisticated and mature international market and there too they have solicited and unsolicited lists, so chill.
Not chasing the agent, gives you the much-needed time to work on the first draft and the proposal you will be sending to the perspective publishers, not to forget the confidence it gives you to represent your own work. I was super-delighted when I got a rejection letter from one of the publishers on my fifth attempt stating they would not be interested as it proved to me that it had indeed hit the intended inbox.
It took me almost two years since I first wrote my first draft and perhaps twenty unanswered rejections and several iterations of my first draft till the point I got a mail from my publisher stating that they would indeed be interested in the book. I liked Preeti and the idea of your book – “She’s fresh and funny” my publisher stated and it took a while to sink in that she was indeed talking about the character I had written.
In the two years, I was waiting, I kept writing articles and short-stories and soon enough I was getting commissioned as a freelancer, which took away the pain of the relentless waiting and rechecking the in-box every 15 minutes.
Getting a book published is and never should be a destination. It is and always will be a journey and if you have the persistence and the perseverance you will find the one publisher who would like your work and be ready to bet their money on you. So, let me use the much clichéd line here and say “Dream Big and Play Deaf” because no matter how many times it has been used it still holds its magic in it.
We congratulate her on publishing her second novel and wish her all the best for her book’s success.