How a contest changed my life!
After spending three years looking for an agent, I was ready to give up. Rejection letter after rejection letter came in. Finally, one agent asked to read the full manuscript for Spellbound. Anxiously, I waited for her to reply. I’m still waiting. She never reached out again. I did some research and found this was her normal behavior. I was about to give up when I saw a contest from Words Matter Publishing last December. I mentioned it to a friend who told me to stop waiting for the agent to reach out and do something! He said I was pretty handy with a pen, that I needed to realize that. I entered Spellbound days before the deadline.
With the holidays and the new year, I forgot about it. It wasn’t until almost the end of January, I remembered. I checked the website and found I was in the top 21! Every time the number was cut, I held my breath as I checked to see if Spellbound was still there. Then I heard from Tammy Koelling, Words Matter Publishing’s CEO, I was the Grand Prize Winner of the Holiday Book Competition!! I won a Publication and Agent contract.
“Spellbound” by Shannon Simpson~ Ashlie, is a slow-aging witch with a multitude of powers, but she prefers to keep to herself as much as possible. She avoids developing friendships with anyone, except for her dog, Netter, and her deceased witch-sister Stephenie who constantly remains in her thoughts giving her often-times unwanted, but needed advice. It’s an emotionally endearing relationship that provides a great deal of witty dialogue throughout the book. Some of the unsolicited advice begins to wear Ashlie down, and she ends up making an excellent friend named Ericka, who she begins to confide in. Finding love, however, was out of the question until vampire Aidan Crane entered her life. Being a vampire made him more durable than a fragile human, but his one weakness, fire, was the one power Ashlie seemed unable to control. Suspense and danger lurk at every turn of the page, but the most compelling drama is how will Ashlie find a way to be with the boy she loves, despite the possibility of a high cost to herself? There is a great intrigue in this vampire-witch relationship, involving deep introspection and gripping dialogue. The reader will hang on each painfully honest and heartfelt word right down to the surprising ending in which we see the true meaning of sacrifice.