Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Success Story!

Feels like it's been a while!  I'm always happy to bring you another success story.  This is our first DIRECT SUCCESS STORY of 2014 -- a Secret Agent winner who signed with the Secret Agent!  Enjoy.


For the full post complete with many more details, GIFs and some caps lock excitement, check out the original post on my blog, Writability.

On October 7th, I submitted to Miss Authoresss Secret Agent Contest. Id entered a Secret Agent contest with a different manuscript earlier in the year, so I knew how it worked and I crossed my fingers and hoped for the e-mail notifying me that Id made it in.

Except the notification day came and went without an e-mail. My entry wasnt chosen for the contest.

I was disappointed, but I distracted myself with NaNoWriMo plans and continued to send out queries. I reminded myself there were loads more contests coming up, so I always had another chance in the future.

Then, on October 14th, the Secret Agent was revealedexcept it was a surprise of two secret agents, Emily Keyes and Louise Fury. To this day, Im not sure why I clicked to see who the winners wereI dont usually, especially if Im still kinda disappointed, which I was. But I clicked and read the names of the winners.

And I nearly had a heart attack. Because listed under Runners up was #41 Slave and Sira.

I stared at the winner entry. It couldnt be a coincidence, could it? Had someone else named their novel Slave and Sira? That seemed really unlikely, considering Sira is a word in a language I made up for the novel.

I raced over to entry #41 and read, with shaking fingers, my entry. The first 250 words of my novel. The entry that I was sure hadnt made it into the contest was posted, and had comments, and the secret agents said it was a strong opening. What. What?!

I ran back to the winner post and checked again to make sure I wasnt dreaming, but it was there! Louise Fury wanted to see my query and the first three chapters of my manuscript. After receiving instructions from Miss Authoress, I sent off the mini-partial that very same day. And I danced. Around Twitter, anyway.

On Halloween, I received a request from Team Fury for the first fifty pages. I danced for joy and sent the pages, announcing to myself that Id received the best Halloween treat ever. Then on November 3rd, I received a request for the full and just a couple hours after I sent it, I got a notification that Ms. Fury was following me on Twitter. I may have freaked out a bit to someone Id been taking to at the time. Just a little.

Many weeks and anxious nights later, on December 6th, just twenty minutes before Id been planning to go to bed, I got the e-mail Id been dreaming of for years: Louise Fury had read my manuscript more than once, spoken with her team members, and they wanted to talk to me.

The call itself is a blur. Team Fury shared my vision for the book, and I agreed with the edit suggestions, and Louise was totally supportive of my wanting to write in multiple categories and genres, and when I hung up the phone, I was having a major David After Dentist episode.

Now, many weeks later, I am so incredibly honored to say Im represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency! And I could not be happier to be joining Team Fury. :D

Thank you, Miss Authoress! That Secret Agent contest really facilitated a dream come true!

Ava Jae


  1. WOOO!! Congrats to Ava Jade! I can't imagine how exciting it must be to be picked as a winner for a SA contest you didn't even think you were in!

    Authoress - is there somewhere specific we should send success stories to you?

  2. Just facelesswords(at)gmail.com. :)

  3. I remember helping to hone the query for another contest we were both in. Congrats again!!!!I hope to be in your shoes soon! Well, you know what I mean,not your actual shoes...unless you wear cute boots, then I'm in!

  4. Great story! With the added drama of a glitch with the confirmation email! I can imagine how surprised you must have been.

    What a great agency you ended up with. Excited for you!

  5. Congratulations! That's such great news.

  6. Congrats, Ava Jae! I loved reading your excerpt on WriteOnCon and remember you being hugely generous with your crits for others. Congrats!

    Authoress, thanks for sharing. Honestly, it's these stories that help keep me going when I am staring into the abyss :)


  7. Congrats! Thank you for sharing your story. Hearing about your success spurs me to work harder and enter the next contest!

  8. Congrats Ava! This is a fabulous story. Many writers can relate to the ill feeling of not making it into a contest. Even the ones that the Autobots pick tend to make us question our writing. Crazy! Man, what if you hadn't looked at the winners list? Would you have received an email from Authoress? Louise Fury? Holy-moly!

    But you DID look! It was meant to be! So freaking exciting! *overstuffs chocolates in mouth*

  9. Congratulations! It's always encouraging to hear a success story!

  10. Thank you so much, everyone!! It's been super exciting for sure, and the e-mail glitch just made the whole experience that much more exciting, and to me, incredible. :)

  11. Congrats! See, hard work and perseverance pays off.

  12. Congrats, Ava Jae! Wishing you much success on Team Fury.

    Hey, Authoress. Glad to see another success story. I may not have submitted anything recently, but I still lurk. Thanks for all you do!

  13. Awesome story, Ava Jade! Thanks for sharing, and here's to a bright future for you and S&S!

  14. Congratulations, and best of luck moving forward!