We all know that the journey to publication is not an easy road traveled. Writers often face discouragement and self-doubt. Author Tina Pinson shares her story and how she remained determined to reach her destination. ~ Dawn
My Journey to Publication
by Tina Pinson
My name is Tina Pinson. I started writing in elementary school. Started a full-length novel in my twenties and finally finished it in my thirties—nine hundred pages later. When Shadows Fall spanned the Civil War and the Oregon Trail. Serial stories and big sweeping sagas were everywhere. So everyone should want my story. Ha. The bridge from finished story to publication took many more years.
Seven years later, I still wasn't published.
Depression set in. Was I a bad writer? Wasn't I trying hard enough? I didn't know. I had some success writing poetry, songs and short stories, but no contracts. I decided to take matters into my own hands, and self-published two of my books.
Sales were bleak and I was kind of happy. Yes, happy. My book editing was horrendous. My stories were full of mistakes. I was embarrassed. I realized, the hard way, good editing was important.
I found out about American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). I joined and learned subjects like GMC, Hero Journeys, Conflict (among others) and my favorite, PO… Point of View. Information overload. UGH.
My books were written in the old style, (omniscient—head hopping) under the old rules. And in the new Christian Publishing world, that didn't fly.
I started to write to fit the rules, and my story, Trail of the Sandpiper, placed third in the Genesis contest. I was certain I'd get published. An agent contacted me, but there were no book contracts.
Over time, I grew frustrated and wanted to quick. I figured I didn't have the talent, so why try. I tried to stop, but couldn't. I decided that God had given me the talent and desire to write and … I would keep at it.
In 2009, I heard about a new secular house that was looking for Romance submissions. I wasn't a 'Romance' Writer. So I didn't think much would happen. I sent in three stories. Two were accepted, In the Manor of the Ghost and Touched By Mercy and were e-printed in 2010. Some said I really wasn't published because my books weren't in print.
I'm still not in "print," and my sales are rather dismal, but I love to write and come up with new ideas and stories.
I know there are many writers who are just as discouraged, if not more, than I was. Who don't understand all the rules or why their books aren't accepted. Why do some author's debut novels become best sellers? Why do other authors wait to become published? If ever?
I wish I had the answer, all I can say to anyone dreaming of writing that novel and being published is, keep plugging away. Learn the rules, but don't let them define you are as a writer. Some rules aren't set in stone. They change. Evolve. Write your heart. Use the talent and imagination God seeded in you. He gave it to you, and He wants you to use for His glory.
Tina Pinson resides in Mesa, Arizona with her husband of thirty plus years, Danny. She started her first novel in elementary school. Her love of writing has caused her to seek creative outlets be it writing poetry, songs, or stories. In the Manor of the Ghost and Touched By Mercy were published through Desert Breeze Publishers.
When Shadows Fall, Shadowed Dreams, and To Catch a Shadow the first three installments of the Shadow Series about the civil war and the Oregon Trail, will be available through Desert Breeze over the next year.
To learn more about Tina and her books, please visit
Her website at: http://www.tinapinson.com/