When you’re a writer and you get a book deal it’s a dream come true. However, when you look at what is behind that incredible achievement you realize that there’s not only persistence, creativity, hard work and a huge amount of time. Right beside you, there are a lot of people sharing the ups and downs in your path to publication. For this reason, with this post, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude to all of those special people in my life who have contributed to make this success possible.
First of all, I want to thank my husband, Patrizio, for always believing in me and pushing me to keep on going when I was having a hard time with rejections. He’s the first one with whom I share my new ideas, and he’s always the first one to read my drafts. He’s been a true cheerleader and I am very thankful to have his support, love, and company through it all.
Next I want to thank my children, who have a huge impact on my writing and who inspire me with their experiences, their way of looking at life, and by sharing what matters most to them in each stage of their lives. They make me want to write the stories I want them to read. In fact, many of my stories have a little bit of my kids in them, which make them extra special for our family.
I also want to thank my parents and siblings for their unconditional and constant support and for celebrating with me every step of the way. It means the world to me to feel them close and to see them happy with my achievements, even if we’re physically apart. I’m truly blessed to have such a loving group of people rooting for me.
My friends have also been an important source of support. They get excited with my news and they are looking forward to the day my book gets to the shelves. They have no idea how much it means when they are interested in knowing what’s going on with my book or when they just want to learn more about this publishing world in which I’m participating now.
My critique partners have all my appreciation. I really think they are a key element to my growth as a writer. I have learned so much from every single one of them, not only about the writing craft but also about how to critique better and how to edit manuscripts effectively. Right now, I have 2 critique groups. Some partners have been by my side for the past four years, while others, I’m getting to meet and some others have gone separate ways but we still swap from time to time. I’m happy to call some of these people friends, although we’ve never physically met. I love our manuscript exchanges, the positive feedback they provide, and their critique style which is uplifting while at the same time truthful in those things that might not be working with my stories. That’s the best kind of critique partners to have, and I’m lucky to share this journey with them.
I also want to thank my writer friends with whom I swap manuscripts from time to time, without being in a critique group. Some of them used to be critique partners at some point; others I’ve met through events, other writers, or in social media. Each of them is a gift to me, and I appreciate that we can help each other with a critique when we need to. They have definitely helped me to make my manuscripts stronger and to become a better writer.
I’m also very grateful for my agent, Natascha Morris, for believing in me and in my stories. She’s amazing and I can’t wait to see what new projects and experiences will come our way.
My editors for Santiago’s Dinosaurios, Andrea Hall and Nivair Gabriel, will always have my gratitude. They were the first ones to believe in this book and working with them has been a wonderful experience. I appreciate the trust they placed on me, the freedom I received to edit what needed to be done, and the open communication we always shared. I feel so lucky that they have been part of Santiago’s team.
The incredible illustrator for Santiago’s Dinosaurios, Udayana Lugo, has my complete admiration. She’s so talented and I’m amazed with how she brought the story to life. Meeting the characters was one of the most special experiences I’ve had, and the book is much better because she’s part of it. I also want to thank the design and marketing team at Albert Whitman for their hard work on this book.
Someone who has made a big difference on my journey and who’s become a dear friend to me is kidlit author Lynne Marie. She has been my mentor and a cheerleader along the way. I love how much she gives to others through her critique service, but also through the mentor texts talks she leads and everything she does in Rate your Story (in which I’m a member). I’ve learned a lot from her, and I am so happy that we crossed paths because we also share our love for k-dramas.
I’m also thankful for all the generosity in the writing community. I never expected it to be this way. It blows my mind away! From writers who support each other on Twitter events and who have encouraging words to share; to agents and authors who giveaway time, critiques, and their knowledge for free to help other writers achieve their goals. Since I started my querying journey on 2020 I’ve had the opportunity of receiving query letter critiques, a zoom call with an agent for my critique group, a phone call with an agent, several manuscript critiques, critiques for my pitches, and even a read aloud recording. All these gifts have been really special and unforgettable. This generosity has really pushed me forward and inspires me to give back too.
Finally, I want to give a special thanks to Rosy Martínez, for my sweet Chester logo; to J. Pray Photography for my lovely headshots, and to whole the team at ICONE for creating such a beautiful website.
THANK YOU EVERYONE!
Cover photo from Pexels.