AN OPEN LETTER TO MY FRIEND JOLLIE   16 comments

Dear Jollie,

If I didn’t love you so (and if you weren’t so far away) I’d be throttling you for your well-intentioned comment. “With all those rave reviews, I don’t understand why you’re having a tough time selling.  I do wonder about one thing, tho’.   Could it be the title?   When one reads about the character and content of the story, it becomes completely understandable, but to someone who doesn’t it may not…especially at a glance.”

After All I’ve been through with the title! Remember? It was originally published as “Mrs. Job.” It wasn’t long, though, before it came through loud and clear that people were pronouncing “Job” as if it referred to paid employment. And besides, I left the Ph.D. after my name, so people got scared off thinking it was some heavy academic tome.

I realized the latter point when I gave a copy to Lisa’s neighbor in Williamsburg. She had to read it, of course, because it was a gift she had to acknowledge. And then she was surprised, discovering that it was a good read. “I was afraid to read it,” she said, “because I thought I wouldn’t understand it.” Oh my!

In spite of all that, though, a traditional publisher wanted to publish it. So back at the beginning of 2013 when Doug and I were heading off for a month’s Asia/Pacific cruise they had me terminate my contract with iUniverse, planning to come up with a new name and cover while I was away. In the meantime they provided an editor to work with me, and a copy editor, so Mrs. Job was thoroughly vetted. It took a long time for the copy editor to make his way through it. I had just made my final response to his latest effort when I received a notice in mid-summer, 2013, that they had lost their funding and would not be publishing “Mrs. Job” or whoever she was to become.

So, Job’s wife was essentially homeless (i.e., unpublished, except for leftover copies) from January, 2013 ‘til November 2014. (Almost two years.) That’s a pretty long time for a lady to be without a home.

At any rate, after much discussion with lots of people, I decided to publish it as “Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses” taken, as you know, from a quote on p. 50. By the time she hit the presses she had been so thoroughly edited that I rejected the first draft when I found a typo on page 115 and re-did it. Even now, there is a “.com” missing on the ESBN page. Just to prove no one or book is perfect.

To tell the truth, Jollie, with the really great reviews “Mts. Job” had received before and “Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses” has received now, I did hope the book might hit the tipping point into great sales. As you point out, it hasn’t happened.

So I won’t throttle you. It’s not your fault.

I did decide to take the advice of a blogger friend and stop sending the message out to the universe that I “need” it to succeed. Sometimes I feel like really retiring and just hanging out with some good books, but instead now I’m focusing on “My Father’s House” and letting Job’s wife find her own way in life.

Well, not quite. Today I listed her on Goodreads. (I just checked. I guess this link won’t take you there until the Goodreads folks have judged it worthy on Monday.) It would be nice if people were to go there and write reviews.

But … nope. Stop that,Mona. I’ll focus on things like getting to choir on time tomorrow morning, and sitting for a while by the fire with one of the many books I have in the works.

Message to the universe: I don’t really “need” for “Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses “ to reach the tipping point, so feel free to come by and tip it.

That’s it, Jollie. I love you and miss you, and cherish all the years of friendship.

Mona

 

 

http://www.amazon.com/Figs-Pomegranates-Special-Cheeses-Story/dp/0692257888/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416091550&sr=1-1&keywords=figs+%26+pomegranates+%26+special+cheeses

16 responses to “AN OPEN LETTER TO MY FRIEND JOLLIE

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  1. I am currently reading this book and enjoying it tremendously. I always wondered how Job could have lost one family and had another. This book is clearing a lot of things up and making them real people, not dry Bible characters. I am really enjoying it, but hate to see it end. I highly recommend it!

  2. And if you stop “needing it” to sell well, you might still keep your intention that it does. :)very different energy. But “need” has a kind of desperation attached to it 😦 (the word-correction-program wanted to correct it to “desecrationLOL”

  3. Whew, you’ve been through a lot with this book–I never knew the complete story before. I got to know you via our blogs somewhere in the middle of the story. I think that you’re taking the right approach by focusing on My Father’s House, while continuing to share the story of Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses. I always think about how things can multiply exponentially over time–so it may just be a matter of time.

  4. Had to laugh whilst reading your post, very humorous! I truly hope Mrs Job in the form of “Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses” reaches the ‘tipping point’ very soon!

  5. Hi Mona. Thank you so much for the follow on my blog noelenesite. I am allowing it to lie ‘fallow’ for a while and am using my ‘Growing into Motherhood’ site for now: http://noelene2014.com/

  6. I’ve read plenty of books with typos, don’t let one little mistake get you down. How can one be so judgmental as to reject a good read over a little thing like that?

    • Thanks for your kind comment.

      Actually my friend was offering a good suggestion. My response was meant to be humorous, given that I redid the whole cover and title at great expense because people had been mispronouncing the original title. In both cases, the ultimate result is a book lying inert on the tarmac, hoping to fly off, but giving little hope that it will move. Yes, I am discouraged, especially now when I know expenses will soon be piling up and I could certainly use some royalties.

      Obviously I’m not a good salesman/marketer.

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