Someday This Will Make a Heck of a Author-Bio


How many of you out there ask yourself…”What’s the deal with DL? He’s been around the blogosphere forever and he still hasn’t landed an agent or even attempted the self-publishing route. Maybe he doesn’t have what it really takes?”

Raise your hand if you thought that…come on...I got mine up. I wondered this for a long time until last year when a small piece of legitimacy and respectability came my way in the form of a short story accepted for publication in an anthology series entitled An Honest Lie. I can’t tell you how much that little accomplishment rejuvenated me. It was like Popeye downing a can of Spinach! "I yam what I yam and tha's all what I yam… a-gah-gah-gah-gah-gah-gah!" I doubled my querying efforts for my mystery/thriller book, pitched it to an agent at a writer’s conference and landed a couple of full-requests. Then I tried my hand writing in the YA genre and was very pleased with my first draft (and so was my CP). My theme for last year was making it uncomfortable in my comfort zone…and it was starting to payoff.

Then the train de-railed on December 21st and everything changed. Those of you who’ve followed my journey know the details, and I’ll not rehash them here, but suffice it to say that 2013 has been a year of setbacks. Writing has pretty much ground to a halt, so has querying, the writers conferences have come and gone with at least one empty seat, and basically most of my forward momentum has turned into suspended animation. I keep semi-active here on the blog, taking part in A-Z…a couple blogfests…WRiTE CLUB, but even here I’m really just treading water. I’m not getting around to other blogs near as much as I’d like to and most of my post are filled with so much angst they come off sounding like a bad episode of Dawson’s Creek. The one thing I was holding onto was the fact that soon I’d see a piece of my writing in print.

That was until the proverbial rug was pulled out from under me last week when I learned that An Honest Lie had gone belly up! I never knew that ground zero could feel so cold. Maybe that’s because I didn’t just end up there, I felt like I was buried six feet under it.

But this is not me boo-hoo’ing again. No, what your reading is me doing what this blog was originally created to do…chronicling my writing journey…good, bad, or indifferent. All of this…the past eight months…is simply another chapter in my story. The medical issues are almost behind us and I’m poised to take up that pursuit once again. Though I haven’t been able to write, I’ve been reading A LOT and doing what I can to prepare for the moment when my mind will be at ease and I can focus on the dream. That time is almost here. My wife’s final treatment is today, which means in a few weeks our family will be on its way back to normalcy. There are still a couple of hurdles ahead, but they are speed bumps compared to the Mount Ranier's she's already climbed. I'm so proud of how she's handled everything thrown at her! But now that my family is safe again, I’ll be turning that cap around on my head real soon.

So, for those of you that have been asking the question I led off with…here’s my answer. If you’ve had faith in me up to this point…hold onto it a while longer. If you’ve always had your doubts…I suggest you put them aside. If you have no opinion either way, but are looking for a horse to back…put your money on me. Although I’ll still have to contend with finding time to write and be creative while holding down a full-time job, past that the only thing holding me back will be finger cramps.

Besides, someday this will all make a dynamite author-bio…don’t you think?

Don’t forget, Bout 4 and Bout 5 of WRiTE CLUB is still accepting votes.  :)

52 comments

  1. So happy for your wife DL!
    Start exercising those fingers, we have faith in you. (:

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  2. DL I know about setbacks. Why do you think I call my blog The Murphey Saga? It reads like a bad soap opera and what I write about is only half the story. (using my best announcer voice)The ongoing S-a-a-g-a-a of the Murphey clan...Real life is the only thing holding me back from Write Club or writing right now.

    Sometimes all you can do is hold your chin up and ride the waves. At least your turmoil is slowing down. Congrats to you and the wife for surviving the bump in the road.

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  3. Happy news regarding your wife. The writing life is filled with problems and set-backs, but we keep coming back for more - we have to, we have no choice, we are writers. I have faith in you :-)

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  4. I'm very happy for you and your family and I hope the road back to normalcy is as smooth as it can be. I know people say the writing is always there, but I also know how frustrating it is not to be able to get to the writing when we desire it, even when other bigger things are more important and more present. The transition may be difficult and frustrating, but I know I have faith in you!

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  5. Hey man,

    Listen, while I don't know all the details, I do understand your wife has been through an awful lot - and you by proxy.

    I'm so very glad to hear that Mrs. D.L. is finished with her treatments and if you guys don't mind, your family is in our family's prayers and I can't wait to hear Mrs. D.L. has a clean bill of health and you, my friend, have published your first of many books :)

    ((HAMMONS))

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  6. Congratulations to your wife for finishing the treatments!! And for you too.

    I'm so sorry about the anthology. I know how much "almost" hurts. Keep persevering.

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  7. It's going to happen. I've been accepted into a few things that never made it to print. I used to feel like my life was going to seriously change when I got published for the first time and it didn't. It's nice for a day or two and then you still have to make dinner and then come up with the next thing to write about.

    Congratulations to your wife for enduring and finishing her treatments.

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  8. Big congratulations to both of you! That is a greater victory than any book deal.
    It's not the setbacks that define you. It's what you do afterwards. Regroup and keep pushing forward, DL.

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  9. I hear you, my friend -- I've ALWAYS been betting on the DL writing horse, ever since first meeting you back in the old WD forums, and I know I'm betting on a winner!!!!

    So true -- it can be extremely tough staying on the path, and I've also fallen by the wayside and had lulls in writing output myself many times over (just see my blog), and you've been tremendously supportive of me over the years. But there are things MUCH more important than writing and your priorities have always been in the right order, and I'm so happy and thrilled that Kim and you have made it over that Mount Ranier!!!!

    But as to writing -- I also know that you have tremendous talent and a great sense of story and that publication WILL happen for you (many times over), and when it does, I'll be the first to say, "See?!?! I told you so!!!"

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  10. DL, never doubted you for one second. You and your wife have been dealing with one of life's most difficult journeys and that takes every ounce of strength, energy and attention. As you said, your family's safety was threatened. Blessings to you both and so happy her final treatment will be behind her after today.

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  11. Big congrats on the final treatment!!( (As someone who has gone through this situation with a close family member, I know what an amazing accomplishment and feeling that is!)

    And for the record? I've never once doubted you. Hate to hear about the anthology going belly up (I wanted a copy!!!), but it's just another piece of your amazing story. I have no doubts that your persistence and your amazing heart will pay off in BIG THINGS to come. Keep on keeping on! And enjoy the next few weeks with your family! The writing will be there when the time comes. ;)

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  12. I'm so happy about your wife!

    And yes, we have faith in you. We never stopped. :)

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  13. I've never thought that, DL. Your season will come. And it will make for a heck of a story.

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  14. Best wishes to your wife and to you. Thankfully this part of your lives will soon be behind you, and your family can look forward to resuming everything you put on hold for the last eight months.

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  15. It's all about how many times you get back up when life knocks you to the ground. You've gotten up every single time. Now it's all about moving forward. Every one of your blog buddies believes in you. There's no way someone can fail with that much good karma around you! (Love to Mrs. DL!)

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  16. I never asked that because I'm in the same boat. I even had an anthology go belly up on me too. I'm glad your wife is on the road to recovery and I know that when you can concentrate on it again your writing will take off. Best of luck!

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  17. So.....it's been awhile since that first mystery I read. What's the next project? And when you're sitting around with nothing to do, how about checking into the stories Chicken Soup is looking for....yes, millions of people face similar challenges, but for every single family, this kind of tribulation is a new experience. Check out what they're putting together in the next few months and write a story - maybe a 2 voice item with your wife's POV alternating.
    Good luck!

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  18. Good news about your wife, you know what's important. Medical issues are scary.

    You have the right attitude, DL, never give up. I'd back you, since you are honest in admitting how crummy it feels when our expectations are unceremoniously dumped. How a person recovers from setbacks can tell us a lot about a person.

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  19. Sadly I know all too well how long it can take to land an agent/get published so I did not raise my hand. I am very glad to hear that your (as in you and your wife's) ordeal is almost over. That IS good news!
    :)

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  20. So glad your wife's treatments are over and things are looking good! Have to admit I got a little teary eyed when I read that.

    I have total faith in you DL - you are definitely on the right track and we'll be seeing your books soon :)

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  21. It's been a long and hard road for both of you I'm sure, but you're seeing the light at the end of that tunnel. Priority number 1 was Mrs. DL and now that she's doing well, you'll be able to kick some serious butt in the writing and publishing department. And yes, that will make an awesome author bio. All the best!

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  22. Thank goodness it's the final treatment DL... that's awesome news!
    Your positive, kick-ass attitude will pay off. It has to. Keep the faith!

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  23. As a new follower, I admit to being unaware to your story... both your writing story and your personal one. However, when a loved one gets sick, EVERYTHING takes a back seat to that because you understand that nothing else is more precious. So pleased to hear that your wife is recovering well and you both will soon be fully back to your lives and passions!

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  24. I'm so happy for your wife :) And no, I've never thought that you might not have what it takes. I know I'll see your name in print one day, and I'll be proud to point to your book and say that I know you! I'm sorry An Honest Lie went belly up. That must be very frustrating. You've still got what it takes!

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  25. We're all here for you, we all have setbacks but you have to believe that forward momentum will resume at some point.

    I know your setbacks have been harder than most, and I'm so pleased that everything is going well for your wife and family now.

    Really enjoying Write Club, by the way ...

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  26. LOVE your spirit, DL! You are truly an inspiration to us :) I'm so glad your wife is on her final treatment.

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    1. PS, In the horserace of publishing, I'd put my money on you :)

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  27. So happy to hear your wife's treatments are over. What a relief for your entire family. Isn't it odd how when something like this happens, nothing seems more exciting or exotic than normalcy? Revel in its joys, DL!

    We all fall victim to setbacks at one time or another. I don't even know if it's fair to call them setbacks. It's more like a stall: life's way of giving us time to regroup and move on. I've not a single doubt that that's exactly what you will do and why your writing success is inevitable.

    VR Barkowski

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  28. Here's sending healing thoughts and prayers to your wife. You have done what you had to do, been where you needed to be. Blogging is nice, it can definitely be fun, but family should ALWAYS come first. And I'm sorry about the writing setback, but this too, shall pass.

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  29. It's good to be on the other side of the slope.

    I have an interesting story coming up in a post sometime soon that you'll probably want to see. I'd tell you when, but I'm not sure, yet.

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  30. Good luck D. L. - it will happen!

    Wonderful news for you, your wife and your family - celebrate!

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  31. Glad to hear some of the rough spots will be behind you and your family soon. I know how it feels to have those huge bumps thrown at you. I have to say, your determination and honesty are admirable. I know you will make good things happen in your life!

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  32. So glad to hear about your wife, please send her my very best wishes for that final treatment. I understand only to well the twists and turns, highs and lows of this journey to publication so I for one have total faith in you and your ability to pull it off. Go you, hope I'm getting ever nearer to the dream as well.

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  33. Just treading water takes a lot of work sometimes--I'm kind of there myself right now. Maybe we can call it doggy-paddling now, but it was just treading for a while. It takes all your strength just to keep your head above the water.
    Keep up the hard work and your good spirits, and congratulations to your wife on her final treatment. She'll be in our prayers.

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  34. Aww dude! I'm sorry to hear about An Honest Lie!
    But! You know the story is good enough to be nabbed up, so don't be afraid (when you're ready) to send it out into the world again

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  35. The perseverance of both you and your wife is inspiring! I'm sorry to hear that An Honest Lie didn't work out. That's really too bad. I'm sure someday all your hard work is going to pay off though! In the meantime, best wishes for your wife's health and for your writing endeavors!

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  36. The best thing about being a writer is that there is no expiration date! Hooray for the LAST treatment. xo

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  37. So glad to hear the good news! You guys are taking the punches and staying with it for sure. It is quite the testament that your blog has retained its health and flourished through it all.

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  38. I think someone will write a whole book just about YOU and your journey - this blog will be a nice set of notes for that lucky biographer. ;)

    Congratulations to your wife and you and your whole family. From the window I'm looking through, you've all handled a rough situation beautifully.

    You've got what it takes to be a successful writer on SO many levels. I never took my money off ya.

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  39. DL, no one with any sense gives up on a writer! Life interferes, sometimes in the form of cancer. Been there, me and then my husband. Kick it to the curb and keep going. Your friends are rooting for you.

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  40. By the looks of these comments, I'd say you have a LOT of fans DL. A person does what he HAS to do in order to get to do what he LOVES to do--and it's never seems to come fast enough. Keep pushing forward and your time will come.

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  41. You Will do it.

    Today I read about how an Irish author whose debut novel was rejected 47 times made it to this year's Booker longlist. The difference between authors and aspiring writers at some point is that the the authors keep plugging away at it. You're ready to go again after the setback (congratulations to you and your wife on the recovery...), and you'll make a success of it.

    In the meanwhile, you already have a mile high fan club :)

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  42. Hello DL, at last a chance to visit you. I remember you well from the A-Z and now more recently on Tree of Life. I have to say I don't remember about your wife being ill and I am really sorry to hear that but so pleased to hear that she is on her way to recovery. What a journey. Am so pleased to reconnect and I'm sending your family love all the way from South Africa :)

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  43. Your damn right it will make a good bio. You'll also be in top demand at writing conferences for your inspirational story. I can honestly say that I've never looked at you as anything other than a success. Look what you've done with this blog! It's absolutely amazing. The lives you've touched! I truly believe that you are made for accomplishing great things and that you've already accomplished some of them. More await!

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  44. Still one of the 'Good Guys'. In your corner buddy, whatever you decide.

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  45. So glad it was your wife's last treatment. And it's awesome how there you were for her. Sorry I haven't been around as much either. For other reasons, I'm going through a writing setback time, but blogging and reading like you. Hope life gets back to normal for you.

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  46. I have been getting frustrated with AHL, and the lack of contact. I was grateful to get the e-mail that returned my story to me. Now I can look for a PAYING home for the story. You will have a chance to query your story again also Don. And in time as your mind and life settles down, your writing will flow again.

    I've been reading again too. I bought a lot of books over the last year or so, I figure its time to see what's under the covers :)

    One hurdle down Dude, you're on an uphill ride now. Which means slow, but steady.

    ......dhole

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  47. Hang in there, DL. You've been through a lot and your priorities were definitely in the right place. Writing is long-term marathon and success is defined in many different ways.

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  48. Doubts? What doubts? Your wife is going to come through this nightmare and back into the sunshine, and you are going to climb back into that writing chair and start moving toward those goals at breakneck speed.

    I have no doubt.

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  49. I can absolutely relate to what you've written. I took a blogging break after experiencing setbacks and a cancer diagnosis of my own. I am so happy you wife has completed her last treatment. I wish her so much health going forward. You've been through a lot. Be sure to breathe.

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  50. Well, I've been at this for several years and haven't landed an agent either. That doesn't mean that me or you or anyone else isn't cut out for this. It took many successful writers years to get an agent and publishing deal. And contending with a full time job and family definitely slows things down. And for me personally, I could have self-pubbed or probably indie-pubbed, but that's not my ultimate goal. I may consider it one day to 'get my foot in the door', but it would only be a means to an end. And you most certainly have been going through a ton this year with your wife, so don't sweat it. We'll get there one day, and it'll be worth the wait :)

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  51. I have faith in you!!! Happy to hear this is the last treatment too :-)
    I worry about this for myself too - when will it happen?!
    Adam Heine had a great post about that once: http://www.adamheine.com/2011/12/how-i-got-my-agent-part-i.html

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