My historical story, Riding on a Christmas Wish, set in 1911 York County, Ontario, Canada, was chosen and ultimately published in Vol 1 - Tales of Faith and Family.
This year when my agent sent me the information for a new Cup of Christmas Cheer set, I saw that Guideposts thought they might put all the historical stories in one volume, and the contemporary or present day ones in a second one.
I had an idea for a contemporary story, but I didn't want to deal with the cell phone age. So I submitted the synopsis for Here We Go A-wassailing set in 1978 and made a note that I was submitting it for the Historical volume.
So for all you struggling writers out there who surf the web wondering how fast or slow these processes take (I've been there), I'm laying out the sequence of events. However, keep in mind that every contract is different and this is different from the process I experienced with Riding on a Christmas Wish for the 2013 Cup of Christmas Cheer.
Feb 12 - Email from Agent: Call Out for Synopses for Guideposts 2014 Christmas collection. Deadline: Mar 10th
Mar 7 - Submitted 2 synopses via email: Here We Go A-wassailing & A Montana Christmas
Apr 11 - Email from Agent: ACCEPTED - Here We Go A-wassailing!!!
Advised to wait for editor's email as he was at a conference.
Apr 21 - Email from Guideposts Editor: Here We Go A-wassailing will be accepted for inclusion in Christmas Cheer II under the following conditions:
- Genre: Contemporary (Must be Present Day vs 1978)
- no magic/must be explainable - this was because I hinted at something in my synopsis
- Deadline: May 5th preferred although could be changed if necessary
- Word Count: Low 5,000-6000
Apr 22 - Email to Guideposts Editor: Acceptance of Conditions
- yes to the Present Day story setting vice 1978
- yes to the story without magic
- yes to the May 5th deadline although I would be missing a weekend family event
Apr 23 - Email from Guideposts Editor: He knows the 2 week deadline is a challenge, and although it is preferred, it isn't written in stone so keep him informed if I need more time
Apr 24 - Came down with a virus: sore throat, major coughing, exploding headache with every cough. It progressively worsened until I couldn't sleep in bed and slept in my recliner, wheezing through the nights, full of over-the-counter meds.
Days spent writing under full stream of cough/cold/flu meds
Apr 28 - Sent Competed Draft of 6800 words to 2 critique partners
Apr 30 - Rec'd 2 critiqued drafts back while I was in the city seeing the doctor and getting prescription for anti-biotics for virus, and prednisone for inflamed lungs
May 1 - Rec'd from Agent via email: Guideposts contract for Here We Go A-wassailing
May 5 - Submitted Story to Guideposts Editor: Here We Go A-wassailing at 5950 words
May 5 - Sent Contract to Guideposts via Canada Post
And now the wait is on.
The next step: Receiving the Editor's Revision Letter and making edits based on his suggestions
I'll let you know how it goes....