Monday, September 17, 2012

Being Frank and Giveaway #1

In my next three blogs I am introducing three books that are coming out this month. Each author has generously agreed to give away a copy of her book. Details on how to enter follow this post. But first, here is Donna Earnhardt who is jumping out of her skin to share her new baby with you. Take it away, Donna!

Carol: How and when did you get your idea for Being Frank? Did anybody in your family inspire the story?

Donna: Some people do creative thinking while cleaning or exercising. I happen to know some wonderful folks who get great ideas while mowing. Me? I usually get them while I’m taking a shower or when I’m praying. I just happened to be doing both when the first line of Being Frank popped into my head! The whole book is inspired by my family. Even the main character’s name. My dad’s first name was Frank! 

Carol: How many rewrites/revisions did you go through? Did  editorial input shape the story?

Donna: I went through a couple of revisions on my own before I queried Shari Greenspan at Flashlight Press. But my changes were not big ones. For about a year or so after she received my manuscript, Shari gave me input and asked for revisions. Her insight was incredible and she saw things that needed changing which I couldn’t see. She has great ideas and they definitely helped the story become what it is today.

Carol: How did you find your publisher? 

Donna: I had already submitted  several things to Shari, but none of them were right for her. As hard as it was to receive rejections, it was nice to know that Shari was quick and honest in her feedback. If she didn’t like it, you knew pretty quickly. She had rejected another book, Pirate Stew, which I revised and resubmitted. She still didn’t like it! J BUT… I believe that interaction was a blessing! It wasn’t too long after that rejection that I sent Being Frank. Obviously, she liked it!

Carol: It sounds as if your back and forth interactions was the basis for a good working relationship between the two of you.  How do you feel about how the book was illustrated?

Donna: Andrea Castellani is incredible!  He surpassed anything I had imagined and completely “got” my story. He captured Frank’s personality and made him come alive! Matter of fact, I think my husband fell in love with Andrea’s work even more than my story! You can see more of Andrew’s work HERE

Carol: How long did the entire submission to publication process take?

Donna: I am relying on my memory here, so let’s see...
a.     Idea, rough drafts: Wrote it during NaNoWriMo 2009 over two days
b.     Initial revisions on my own, then query submission: two days
c.     Request for entire MS from editor then frantic submission to critique group for feedback: 2-4 days
d.     Submission of entire manuscript (with more revisions) sent to Shari: 3-5 days after critique group’s feedback.
e.     Positive response from Shari indicating she was interested in considering it: Not long. Perhaps a week after submission.
f.      Revisions and rewrites via email: 15 or so revisions (with editor) over the course of a year.
g.     Contract: May 2011!!!
h.     Happy dance: still happening!

Carol: What's next? Another book Flashlight Press, looking for an agent, or just trying to keep the dust bunnies under control at this point?

Donna: I am in the process of looking for an agent for my other picture books and chapter books. After submitting to agents I am now waiting. J If I don’t find an agent that fits (or who totally loves my books), then I’ll submit to houses on my own.

As for the dust bunnies? They are incorrigible. First they staged a coup, now they have created their own production company. They’ve already made up their first two romantic comedies -- Some Like it Hop and Bringing up Bunny.

Carol: When is your book launch?
Donna: Park Road Books on Saturday, September 22 from 11:30-1:30. 

Carol: Thanks, Donna, for sharing the backstory of your book. I can't wait to get copies for my grandchildren. No home should be without this book!
Donna: I appreciate the opportunity to be on your ultra-cool beans blog!
To enter this giveaway: 
1. Please share this on your social media site of your choice and/or become a follower of this blog.
2. Leave me a comment, with your email address, indicating which you did.
3. Winner's name will be drawn September 19th after 6 PM.

Donna with Sean, her husband of 17 years and
one of the many Franks in her life.  
When Donna isn't homeschooling or battling the laundry, she's writing children's stories, poetry, songs, and mysteries. You might find her fishing the Pee Dee River, hiking in the mountains with her family, or visiting her hometown of Cordova, NC. She lives in Concord, NC, and Being Frank is her first picture book.


Joyce Moyer Hostetter said...

Loved my sneak preview of this book last spring. So excited the time has come. I'm standing in line for Dust Bunnies' romantic comedies.

Enter me please! Of course I'll link on FB.

Congrats on the great Kirkus review, Donna!

Tameka Fryer Brown said...

So glad that FRANK is finally here! Congratulations, Donna. The best is yet to come. :)--TFB

kristi said...

We've already bought a copy to donate to my daughter's class for her birthday and would love another to keep at home! I tweeted the link. Thanks!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks ladies, for stopping by and sharing this post! Let the giveaway begin!

Becky said...

I already have the book and it is fabulous! :) I will put this on my facebook page but don't put me in the drawing. The book I have is mine and my grandchildren don't need one because their mama is the author! :)

Peter said...

Well, after all the great things I've heard about this book, it's at the top of my must get list! I'm sending this to Twitter (fyi...) Thanks!!

Carol Baldwin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Peter & Becky for sharing this post!

Young Authors Program said...

I am SO excited to meet Frank! I picked up a copy today from Park Road Books. I agree with TFB, the best is yet to come!!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Dorothy, for sharing this post!

Linda Vigen Phillips said...

I don't know you well yet, Donna, but I'm going to brag that I do! I love your book and it sounds like there is much more good "stuff" to come from you. Thanks for this opportunity to win a book, Carol, and I will gladly share on FB.

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Linda, you;re in!

Kathy B said...

Congratulations Donna! The book is fantastic--I love hearing local success stories--and the fact that I am not alone in the Dust Bunnies Anonymous club! This will be a great book for my first grade CCD class when I go back to teaching next year!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Kathy for stopping by. I'll enter your name in the contest!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Kathy for stopping by. I'll enter your name in the contest!

Christina Parker Brown said...

I would love the chance to win. Will put on fb now. yogabean1 at gmail dot com

Carol Baldwin said...

You're in Christina! I'm drawing a winner tonight.

Linda A. said...

I missed the drawing, but I didn't want to miss the fun! Yay Donna! Thanks for supporting and promoting her, Carol.

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Linda, for stopping by. I have 2 more giveaways coming up shortly--so get ready to enter!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, CArol, for this chance to be on your blog. And thanks to everyone who helped promote this post and Being Frank. Congratulations to the book winner (Hi Joyce!). Send me your address and I'll send you Frank! :)


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