Janet Mullany--The CallMy Golden Heart call was pretty unexciting because I didn't know what a big deal it was. I'd had a full ready to go, more or less, so I entered it into the contest everyone said was the biggest thing since sliced bread and promptly forgot about it.
I was, uh, in the bathroom, if you know what I mean and I think you do. Cool. I'd finalled. I went to a writer friend's birthday party later that day and everyone else was a lot more excited than I was; frankly I'd rather have had a job, having lost mine a few weeks before, and spending rather a lot of time eating yams and watching English home improvement shows on tv.
Fast forward to September 1, 2004. I was unemployed--again--and wandering around the house in a slovenly, not-yet-dressed sort of way early in the afternoon. That summer another ms., Dedication, had won the non-traditional category of The Beau Monde's Royal Ascot and the editor who judged the final round had asked for a full. So naturally I was trying not to think about it, since I'd had a lot of near misses with Dedication, which had been my major contest cow for a year or more.
When the phone rang, an editor from NAL was on the line. Slowly it dawned upon me that editors don't call you up to say, well, sorry, we sorta liked it, but... she wanted to buy my book. Wow. Then she told me she wanted me to cut 20,000 words from it because it was for the Signet Regency line and I'd written it as a single title.
Sure, I said, and then said what I was sure would break the deal: But the sex has to stay.
She didn't miss a beat. Sure, no big deal.
The sex stayed. I got another job. Dedication was published in September 2005, the only Signet Regency with two bondage scenes. It's now out of print but it's being sold secondhand for $40+ and I wish I'd bought up more copies to support me in my declining years.