Monday, August 27, 2012

Guest Post: Cat Lavoie

On Saturday I shared my review of Breaking the Rules by Cat Lavoie. I'll give you a quick recap in case you missed it: I freaking loved it. LOVED it. Today, Cat was kind enough to write a guest post for Books Etc. Because I knew that Cat had published her novel with Marching Ink, which is run by the fabulous author Samantha March, I was curious to see what her writing journey was like. Read on to find out how it went for her!

My Journey to Publication

When I stop and really think about it, my journey to publication began with a single blog post. I was in the throes of major writer's block at the end of November 2009 and I felt as though I couldn't write another word of Breaking the Rules. That's when I decided to start a blog—Catenabi Chronicles. I knew that I had to keep writing in order to get out of my funk. My other 'trick' to beat writer's block—stepping away from the computer and taking a break—had backfired because I stepped away for far too long and found it more enjoyable than sitting in front of my computer. So if I couldn't write my novel, I had to write something. So I used my new blog to post pictures of my cat Abbie and chronicle my attempts to finish the first draft of Breaking the Rules by midnight on December 31, 2009. Blogging actually helped me beat the block and I made my deadline with only ten minutes to spare.  

With the first draft done, I thought that the hard part was over. All I needed to do was whip that draft into shape. The rest had to be easy, right? Wrong. What followed were several months of querying agents and editors and those months quickly turned into two years of relentless rejections. Some rejections were quick and surprisingly painless. Others were long and drawn-out in a series of emails and—even though there was a bit of interest—every time I thought my foot was in the door, it eventually led to disappointment. At one point, I thought Breaking the Rules was destined to line the bottom of a drawer. I started working on a second novel and—even though I liked where it was headed—I couldn't get Breaking the Rules out of my head. I decided to self-publish it. During that process, I met fellow author Samantha March who told me about the publishing company she'd started, Marching Ink. I was really overwhelmed by her reaction to Breaking the Rules and her subsequent offer to publish it through her indie press. I was so happy to connect with someone who loved this story as much as I did and who wanted to work with me and send this novel out into the world. Signing with Marching Ink felt right; I knew Breaking the Rules had finally found its happy home.

A few months ago, I got to announce the news I'd been waiting so long to post on the Catenabi Chronicles. My novel had a publication date and cover art and it would be a real book instead of a pile of marked-up pages on my desk. That post was the exact opposite of the very first post I'd written a few years back. Instead of a rant on writer's block and tons of self-doubt, I was able to celebrate some of the best news I've ever had to share. And even though the journey was bumpy at times, I was able to look back and be thankful for the rollercoaster ride that brought me to that moment.

The fact that I can now hold a physical copy of Breaking the Rules in my hand feels extremely surreal. And I'm happy that—after more than two years of posting adorable pictures of Abbie on the Catenabi Chronicles—I was finally able to post a picture of her being adorable… next to a pile of my novels.

Isn't she sweet? I love this picture. Thanks for sharing it - and this post - Cat! Stay tuned for an interview with Cat coming up on Books Etc. on Wednesday!

Happy reading :)


  1. I have loved working with you Cat! And Kaley - still thrilled you loved Breaking the Rules :)

  2. Thanks Samantha! Same here... working with you has been awesome!! :) Thanks again for having me, Kaley!! I am throughly enjoying my time on your blog! :)

  3. Thank you ladies! I love having Cat on my blog! Can't wait to feature the next work from both of you ladies - so get busy Cat :-)


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