Mark Terry

Monday, January 01, 2007

Just Warming Up

January 1, 2007
Ah, well, I spent a couple hours on the last day of 2006 cleaning my office, throwing out a ton of paperwork that was no longer necessary to keep around and filing paperwork that is necessary to keep around. The day before that I spent a little too much money on some end-of-year write-offable stuff like a new desk chair (definitely needed) and a backup hard drive (probably long overdue, since I'm still floppy reliant and they're getting harder and harder to find).

I also added up my income for the 4th quarter so we can send a check to George Bush and to Jennifer Granholm (oh joy).

Today I'm doing more of the same, getting rid of some busy work like cleaning my whiteboard and adding various dates for the journal I edit to it and my Outlook calendar, getting a notebook ready for the publications, filing last year's invoices.

Looks like I'm back to work.

I fully expect 2007 to be an exciting, interesting and profitable year. And you should, too, because there's nothing like a lack of expectations to make you live down to them. I'm all too aware that shit happens, but I'm starting this year with the idea that I'm going to make at least as much money as I did in 2006, that The Serpent's Kiss will be published July 1st to great acclaim and take off, that I will complete the 4th Derek Stillwater novel with plenty of time and that I will be signing additional book contracts this year for more Derek Stillwaters as well as a few other projects I'm working on.

Optimism is good, I think. I'm not all that optimistic a personality, but I used to be quite glum and down, and trust me on this, more gets accomplished when you think it can be accomplished. I always am reminded of one of my favorite episodes of "West Wing," in which President Bartlett was having a dinner party with a bunch of his wife's friends, who were all physicians, and somebody commented that they should be able to cure cancer. Bartlett got it into his head to do a kind of Manhattan Project or Apollo Program to cure cancer and told his staff to get going on it. They were all against it except Sam (played by Rob Lowe) and when they finally got to the end of the episode, the plan was scrapped. Everybody agreed that it would look like a political distraction, that they were overreaching, that they needed to get all sorts of parties and committees and departments behind them before they went ahead. Bartlett looked at Sam and asked him what he thought. He said something like this:

"I think government should be optimistic. I think it should overreach and try the impossible. I think it's what the American people want and need."

Well, that's a paraphrase and I'm not talking about government right now, which has overreached in a catastrophic fashion lately. What I'm saying is if you want to get published in 2007, you need to be optimistic and ambitious and far-reaching. 2007 could really be your year.

Best,
Mark Terry

3 Comments:

Anonymous spyscribbler said...

Any chance for Meg Malloy mysteries in the schedule? I'm starting to like her a whole lot!

You're so right. And why not? Even if one doesn't make it as far as one reaches, one will still get pretty far. The worst that can happen is disappointment. Luckily, it's not a life-threatening condition. :-)

4:59 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Probably no Meg Malloys in the future. It's a long story, but I did write a second one, Bad Intentions, and gave it to my editor at High Country. They sat on it for months without even reading it--long after the option clause was up. Then, in frustration, I sent a copy of it to my agent, who loved it. We spent some time getting some bad clauses in the first contract with HC changed (good reason to have an agent) and we parted ways amicably. It's hard for me to tell if HC planned to publish Intentions or not. They had picked up a couple midlist authors that they were focusing their attentions on. My guess is that eventually they would have, but by then I had contracts with Midnight Ink and was just moving on. Anyway, we shopped Intentions around, but no bites. The issue seemed to be that it was the second in a series (which didn't exactly blow away the marketplace). Too bad, because Intentions was a lot of fun, but... maybe someday.

5:40 AM  
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8:57 PM  

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