Thursday, July 30, 2009

Taking Note: Maryann McFadden

By now, you all know that I love inspiring stories. I continue to be amazed at how many I learn of and the ways in which I trip over them.

I found Maryann McFadden on Facebook. As I generally do when I make new friends I look to see who their friends are and any commonalities I might share. Which is how I found Maryann. An author with a long background in selling, in her case real estate, I sensed a connection. So I friended her. I also immediately went out and got myself a copy of her first book, The Richest Season. (released in paperback in July)

As it turns out, The Richest Season is a story of reinvention. The main character, Joanna (no kidding) is off on a reinvention journey. The influences of Corporate America play a role in her story as well as that of her estranged husband, Paul. A third character, Grace, is interwoven to illustrate just how short life really is.

The Richest Season is one of those books, you really don’t want to end, taking place in a location that made me want to get in my car and drive to Pawley's Island immediately. The writing is the kind that assures you will read everything else you can get your hands on by this author.

So go get yourself a copy. But before that, let me tell you what I learned about Maryann’s own story.

She always wanted to write, but like many of us with a true passion, got sidetracked. And when she did put attention on her writing, she suffered the rejection that is all too common in today’s publishing environment. Good, fresh voices are also seen as big risks. While as a writer we may be out of the daily four walls of the office cubicle, the decision making process that occurs there still affects us. Good new talent is often passed for what might be seen as a safer bet or a bigger name. In other words, more revenue for the company. If you follow the publishing world, you know that often results in huge advances that don’t necessarily pay out.

Maryann McFadden got tired of rejection and decided to self publish as well as self market. The Indies loved her and that took her to the agent who got her a 2 book deal with Hyperion. Her second book, So Happy Together was just released in hardcover.

Maryann’s story, both her fiction and her real life inspire me. She had a dream, she held on to it, and it was realized. Perhaps not in exactly the way she had planned, but then the Universe is like that. It always delivers. Our job is to hold to our vision and detach from the route it takes us to get there.

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