- Katie Ashley
- Atlanta, GA, United States
- I am the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best Selling author of The Proposition, Proposal, Music of the Heart, and Nets and Lies. I am represented by Jane Dystel of Dystel and Goderich for all books except for Proposition and Proposal.
Powered by Blogger.
- ► 2014 (22)
- ▼ September (5)
Monday, September 30, 2013
The Proposition wasn't the first book I ever wrote. It wasn't the first one I tried to seek traditional publication with. No, my story starts four years earlier with a literary fiction adult novel called The Road to Damascus(think To Kill a Mockingbird and Fried Green Tomatoes). I then read Twilight and took a detour on the Young Adult path writing the Urban Fantasy, The Guardians. It wasn't until Don't Hate the Player, six months later, that I landed my first literary agent and my first almost publishing deal with Penguin. After the deal fell through in the Summer of 2010, fast forward two years and two new manuscripts later(and a whole lot of heartache of writing dreams being unfulfilled).
Here's where it gets a little personal. I can say that without a doubt 2012 was one of the worst years of my life. In May, I lost my grandmother, Big Mama, unexpectedly to a heart attack. As an only child and after losing my dad to cancer when I was seventeen and my mom, also to cancer, when I was twenty-three, she was the center of my entire world. She lived five minutes from me. I was with her every day, and she was my rock of support, faith, and encouragement. She had walked every step of the way along my writing journey, and she believed in me and my writing, even when I didn't.
With Big Mama at my Road to Damascus signing
In New York at Grease on Broadway
Three weeks after her passing, my agent got in touch with me and said we had two interested publishing houses for my Young Adult manuscript, Jules, the Bounty Hunter(one was Bloomsbury who pubbed Harry Potter...I was ecstatic ). I couldn't believe it--it looked like I was finally going to achieve my dream of being published. I mean, who could have another "almost" deal with two interested publishing houses?
In mid July, my dream was once again shattered. Both publishing houses walked away even though my agent was certain a deal was going to happen. I don't remember much of the time after the deal fell through and I had to go back to teaching. Because of budget cuts, I'd been shifted to another high school. Everything in my life was tumultuous change. I remember crying on the way to school so many mornings. But one thing besides my dark depression remained the same--my love for Aidan and Emma and their story.
September came and after submitting my agent's requested revisions on Search Me, she decided that she hated the book entirely. I decided I was done with traditional publishing, and I broke ties with her. I put all my energy into finishing The Proposition.
As a high school teacher, Katie Ashley was born out of necessity. I wanted to keep my same initials for my pen name. Katie was a girl's name I'd always like(in the original Don't Hate the Player, Maddie was named Katie), and then my real last name is Ashe. So huzzah, I had a pen name!
When I hit publish on October 30th, I never envisioned any of this. In the end, I just wanted validation for my work and for people to read and enjoy what I had written. I had been down the road too many times to believe that something extraordinary and life-altering was about to happen. On Halloween, I remember getting a message from a writer buddy telling me that The Proposition had debuted at 240. I was in shock. I'd put out Road to Damascus and The Guardians by then with ranks in the 100,000's. That evening as Trick or Treater's overran my neighborhood, I remember sitting in front of my laptop in shock.
And almost a year later, I'm still in shock. I've been blessed beyond all measure. I've been able to quit teaching and write full time, I've been able to travel around the country, and soon to be world, meeting readers and fellow writers. I'm a multiple New York Times and USA Today Best-seller, and The Proposition will debut in Brazil in October while following soon in other countries.
Sometimes I wonder what it was about The Proposition that resonated with readers. It's an odd little book when you think about it--a desperate single gal, a manwhore, and some sperm, lol. But fundamentally it's much deeper than just that. Emma is me in so many ways--her struggles along with her hopes and dreams. The love of family and friends is what I've been blessed to experience in my life.
So dear readers, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without you, there would be none of these amazing blessings in my life. To show some of my appreciation, I'm running a month long anniversary celebration. Each week, I'll be doing a giveaway for a grand total of 2 Kindle Paperwhites and 2 Kindle Fire's along with some other prizes like signed books and swag.
a Rafflecopter giveaway