Donna Everhart

INKED! Update

UPDATE:  Building on this original post, I’ve just completed an interview with BookHive’s Queen Bee, Jennifer Bowen.  The interview sheds a little bit of light on how the book deal came about, which some of you expressed an interest in.


I’m so very happy to finally share that I have a book deal for my novel THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE with Kensington Publishing Corp.

In early April I received an email from my agent.  The subject line was pertaining to another novel of mine, so I didn’t open it right away.  I was expecting bad news.  When I finally did, this was the opening sentence:

“We have an offer on Dixie Dupree.”

I’d been going along for some time under a ceiling of doubt I couldn’t seem to shake.  Well.  The sentence blew that up.  And gave it a good shaking too, as if to say, “See, you didn’t think you could, and look.  You did.”

If you write, you understand this in only the way a writer would.

At any rate, already, so much has happened since that email.  I signed the contract in late May, and soon after…I received a stack of VERY REAL, RED PENCILED PAGES FROM MY EDITOR.   (I’m still screaming about all this in my head – here as well, it would seem)

Shit! Look!
Look! Look!

And then, a few weeks later, the fully executed contract came from my agent, which truly made it “official.”


Since those first, very surreal and giddy days of happiness, I’ve submitted my first round of edits/revisions to John Scognamiglio, the inimitable editor I am so lucky to work with, and he has accepted the changes.

After that happened, the Publisher’s Marketplace announcement came out yesterday:

Donna Everhart’s THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE, focusing on the shared secrets existing between an eleven-year-old and her mother, and who when confronted by cruelty from those closest to her, exhibits a prevailing spirit and resilience beyond her years, to John Scognamiglio at Kensington, by John Talbot at Talbot Fortune Agency (World).

Since April, I’ve been doing plenty of this:

Happy Dance
Happy, happy, happy dance!

A lot of this.

Drink, toast, drink some more.

THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE will come out as a trade paperback original, and the release date is NOVEMBER 2016. 


53 thoughts on “INKED! Update”

  1. November 2016?! I know, there’s cover art and publicity and all that stuff to do. HOW COOL!! I can only imagine how excited you are to see cover samples (I would be)–to see your name in print on the front and the spine along with a picture or design based on YOUR story!

    You might not have been wanting to share this much, but I think the story for those of us still working toward that dream is that this wasn’t the book you expected to sell, correct? If you don’t mind, I think it would be helpful and encouraging if you could share that story, perhaps in a follow-up article?

    So so so happy for you, Donna. Let us know when it’s available for pre-order. 🙂

    1. With your typical astuteness, you are correct Colin! It wasn’t the book I expected to sell. I am very excited to see what they come up with for the cover. Kensington does a GREAT job in that department (among others) If you take a peek at their site you’ll see what I mean. (what if I also get that deckled edge you hate? LOL!)

      I will share what happened later on – because I know how much I’ve always loved reading a publication story.

      Thanks Colin for sharing in the happy vibes! (pre-order will be late Oct 2016)

      1. To show how committed I am to your success, as well as how supportive I am of your career, Donna, I’ll buy the book even if it has a deckled edge. 🙂

        I look forward to the publication story!

  2. I’m booking my flight for the publication party.

    Congratulations on this great, great news!

    (Also, I’m surprised that package arrived given the quality of the handwriting for your address.)

    1. Thank you so much Christina!!! I guess I’ll quit pinching myself at some point. It’s the sort of good news that’s even BETTER when shared!

    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate your support – and can I also say, you’ve taken some really stunning photographs over the years. I like to browse them, and have enjoyed so much of your work.

  3. Congratulations so incredibly much, Donna! And I agree wholeheartedly with Colin; I’d love to hear the story of ‘the book you hadn’t expected to sell’ 🙂
    Oh, and thanks for the compliment re my name, over on Janet’s blog: I’ve only just know read your reply (time zone difference, probably). My name’s “Ceridwyn” but pronounced with a hard ‘K’, so I plan on publishing – if I ever get fortunate enough! – under “K.Ridwyn”. Unfortunately, Google doesn’t let me use just an initial as a first name, so I lengthened the initial to ‘Kae”. Long story, not very interesting, I know. Sorry.
    Oh – and thank you for your posts on B-con too! Jealous much!!!

    1. Hey Kae – based on what you say, it rhymes, no? I was thinking it was pronounced Ki – long i. Anywhoooooo! Makes perfect sense to me what you’re doing with the pub name.

      I’ll have to put the other part of the pub story together at some point, but I don’t want to wear everyone out with the news – cause you know, I could go on and on and on and on.


  4. You can’t imagine how excited I am for you (jumping up and down)! I’m celebrating with you, my dear friend. Cheers! 😀


  5. Aww, mon ami , just a few days ago I was trying to figure a way to keep you from catching the disease. I mean the disease that many neophytes at writing conferences catch. It seems like ancient history when you wrote the Overheard at Boucheran post hit. It was then that I wondered if you would catch the ‘Such and Such Said” disease.

    Now you have no reason to. You are now certifiable and have no need.

    So, may I please drop your name occasionally?

  6. Okay. There you go again. Hang on while I go and get a paper towel to clear up the mess (coffee) that’s now all over my keyboard and desk. Sheesh. I should know better by now.

    Funny about that “Such and Such Said” disease. The freelance editor I used to use (the one who helped me edit THE BOOK THAT HAS NOW SOLD – pause for freak out moment)

    …she dropped the name of a BIG publishing type when she emailed my agent about the interest of a London agency in my second book. She said, “just the other day, so and so was saying that Luigi Bonomi was one of her favorite agents.”

    That’s a whole other story, but let me tell you, it gets one’s attention.

    At any rate, at this point? Dropping my name is going to be like whispering a secret into a deaf person’s ear. 🙂

  7. Donna, what wonderful news! Enjoy the ride =) and please share your journey to publication. Gives us wee woodland creatures something to cling too!

    1. Ah, but I am only a wee woodland creature myself, suddenly thrown into this big brand new thing of which I have no clue of what happens, and when and why and is it me? Or is it my worry wheel going crazy, and…

      See? Still the same. LOL!

      However, YES! I will share as I can, you can bet on it!

    1. Thank you, Averil! Been a long time coming, but it finally happened – deal AND announcement – ha! One took almost as long as the other. Well. Not QUITE as long but it felt like it!


    1. Thank you Jennine! OMG, it seems like ages since I emailed you all those months ago…! I’ll be a nervous wreck when I know you’re reading it! 🙂

      1. I know! I was waiting to hear more about it and am so glad all has moved along. Once I get my hands on a copy, I’m sending it to be signed!

  8. Wow! Wow! Wow!

    I don’t think I know ANY authors, so despite the fact that technically I don’t know you either, you’re the closest thing I have to knowing an author. None of which should make you feel special at all, but when I first started typing it seemed like it might be more impressive. Huh.

    Okay, I’ve quasi-“talked” to you via technology, so I’m counting it. Such awesome news. If I congratulate you 16 times, it still won’t be enough. (Don’t worry, I won’t. Twice is probably enough from your end.)

    I’ll put in an additional request to tack on to Colin’s … I’d be curious to know when and how you landed your agent. Also, it sounded like you planned to hit Bouchercon because you were working on a crime novel. Then you started working on something different before Bouchercon landed in your neck of the woods, and now your crime novel goes and sells. How crazy is life?!

    Can only imagine how thrilling every day is. Have fun with it. Don’t worry about doing everything the correct way, enjoy every bit of it.

    Great job!
    John Frain

    1. This comment has me chortling. I’ve decided chortling = ugly laugh. I mean, doesn’t the word make you think of someone with an ugly laugh? The kind where your sort of snort out your nose? Or where you’re going “ooohoohoohooo!”

      This whole author thing is totally blown out of whack. See? I’m already disillusioned. (NOT – but I thought it might sound interesting here)


      Actually, you have the Bouchercon thingie sort of reversed. Last year I signed up for it when I was writing the hard crime novel. And this other book sold.

      But yes! I’ll share my meandering path to pub. They say everyone has their own story. Mine won’t seem so oooooooo! once ya’ll hear it!

      Thank you so much, John!

  9. What was that word I was looking for?
    Or something like that. Well done You.

    And after the immense amount of work it has taken you to achieve this wonderful thing, bask in the warm glow of it … and … and … ready? Okay, enough basking — the real work begins here!
    Go for it. You’ve got this.

    1. Mary Poppins is just a singing in my ear.

      Thank you so much, Harry! And thank you for the occasional KICK IN THE PANTS when I’d write some wah wah post out here. I took your words to heart.

      And boy, you are so right. The real work begins here. Without a doubt. It’s good work though, or maybe I should say, it’s a good feeling doing that work!


    1. Thank you so much, Angie! (I didn’t know who “angearcange” was btw. Your comment had to be approved first, so thank goodness your lovely last name showed when I went to moderate!)

    1. It’s kind of weird (how fitting) b/c it became easy. It came down to the fact I knew people would hear sooner or later…and the longer it went with me keeping my mouth shut, the easier it got. If you can believe this, there are mornings I wake up now – and my heart doesn’t start slamming in my chest. Now it’s more of a warm, easy glow. A year ago I would never have imagined THAT. Of course, sharing it more broadly than with just family and a few close friends has regenerated all of my original heart pumping excitement.

      Bottom line – it just seems f”ing surreal.

      Please do! Cin cin! (glad I looked THAT up)

    1. Sharing with everyone has truly re-energized an unbelievable feeling of excitement.

      The State Fair is here and I can still remember waiting in line when I was a kid, about to get on a new scary ride. The adrenalin while standing amongst the others would almost make me sick. Even then, I was quiet. I didn’t want to talk. I didn’t want to joke, and laugh. I just wanted to look at the ride and picture myself on it. Sort a the same here. 🙂 I think that’s called reveling in it.

      Yeah, it’s feeling grand.

  10. Well, Domna, this is absolutely fantastic news. I’m doing a happy dance right along with you. Can’t wait to read your book. Here’s to Bovember 2016.

  11. Donna, I’m so sorry I missed the news about David in JRs comment trail yesterday (I was there early and didn’t get back). Thinking of you and his family. (((hugs))), AJ

    1. Ah, the comment trail can be long and winding. You’d have to read every single snippet to be in the know – and if you’re like me, lately I’ve been skimming a lot. At any rate, thank you for your thoughts! David was a really special person, and if you’d seen the packed church, you’d have known it. We are all going to miss him immensely. I feel so badly for his wife and two kids – who are in college, but with all of those important moments still ahead of them.

  12. Hey, congratulations! I’m a little late to the party, but I just wanted to let you know how happy I am for you and excited, too.

    1. Hey, Thanks Mike! Much appreciated. Btw…I’ve been meaning to mention this, I see/read/sense a shift in your writing over on Betsy’s blog. When you leave a comment, they’re so full of richness, I usually read them over and over again, like the way I nibble really good chocolate! Thanks for dropping in, and hey, it’s never too late to join a party!

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