Katia Raina

The Magic Mirror

This Is It

I have been dreaming about writing this post for so long, and now I find myself stalling.

But here goes the big announcement — yeah, that BIG ANNOUNCEMENT — it’s happened! Cue in background music to dreams coming true.

My first novel, which happens to be the very fist manuscript I ever wrote  is going to be published by a small innovative press, called Namelos.  “Castle of Concrete,” a historical young adult story set in the collapsing Soviet Union, follows a shy Jewish teen on a coming-of-age journey as she falls for a boy whose political convictions make her question her own identity. Namelos is a young publisher run by industry veterans with solid reputations. I aim to blog about them more in the weeks to come.

It took me roughly six years to write this story, then another year trying to sell with a not-right-for-me agency, followed by additional revisions and three more years with a tireless, committed, cheerful Jessica Regel of Jean V Naggar, who made it clear she believed in me.

It took hours and hours of writing, revising, waiting, not waiting, revising some more, not sleeping, writing something new, revising again, trying to move on, reading, learning. It took tons of support and constant cheerleading from family, writing buddies and close friends.

It also took the help of a friend to make that final push that resulted in the match. Thank you, dear Joyce Moyer Hostetter. You are amazing.

It was a winding journey and an incredible learning experience, for which today I am intensely grateful. I now realize that Universe really does always present us with impeccable timing. Every day that I’ve waited I had to learn to toughen up, lighten up, cheer up.

If you are in the middle of this writing journey, the best advice I could give you is: put in your time. Do your work: revisions, writing, learning. Anything else — hopes, dreams, wishes — just let that go. I know, I know, it’s easy to say, right?

But it was only when I have truly let go of all my expectations of immediate — or quick – success, only when I have learned to love my life as it was now, not dream about the way it would one day become, only when I have embraced my identity as a writer by writing every single day, and doing it with joy, as a celebration, only then could I reach out and touch what maybe had been mine all along.

This is a beginning. My editor and I still have much work to do on “Castle.” Only once we finalize all our revisions, I will get a pub date, and of course will let you all know it. But I am not rushing this thing. I am enjoying it all, taking a moment now to celebrate. In a few days, I am going away to Italy and France with family for three weeks, and upon my return, I will get started on those revisions. I will celebrate that.

I still have so much more to learn, so many words to write, so many other stories to share. I am an author now. Wow. But also, I am just another writer. I have been, for a long time, maybe always. And I will always be.

This is it. And at the same time, this is a beginning.

Thank you all for walking along this beautiful scenic route with me. Now let the journey continue!

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July 26, 2012 - Posted by | Personal Mirror, Writing Mirror | , , , , ,


  1. Congratulations, Katia! What a terrific accomplishment! You put in so much hard work and now finally it has come to fruition. Enjoy it!

    Comment by Ben | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • More hard work is ahead, but I am saying that like it’s a good thing, because it is. As for enjoying it, yes, I am, I am, I am!!! Thanks so much, Ben.

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  2. Yay, Katia! I can’t wait to celebrate with you! Congratulations! :)

    Comment by Patti Brown | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  3. I’m so happy for you. It’s wonderful that it’s happening, another leg of this journey. Your hard work paid off. :)

    Comment by Medeia Sharif | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thank you Medeia. I remember you saying on this very blog in one of the comments how one day soon I’d be blogging about this . . . and here we go :) Love it when this happens, don’t you?

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  4. Love reading this announcement! Happy revising!

    Comment by joycemoyerhostetter | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thank you, Joyce. And . . . thank you :) No revising for me yet . . . I’ve got about three weeks to go ;) xoxo

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  5. Congratulations to you, Katia! I’m excited and thrilled for you! Namelos is a great press. I love their books, and I’ll be looking forward to yours.

    Comment by Clara Gillow Clark | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thank you, Clara! That means a lot!!!

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  6. I look forward to reading it :)

    Comment by The Smile Scavenger | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thank you!! I’ll be sure to keep you posted ;)

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  7. Huge congrats, Katia! I knew all your hard work would pay off. I love that you’ve been writing with joy. May that always continue.

    Comment by Joanne Fritz | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thanks, Joanne, and same for you! :)

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  8. Katia, I am so happy for you. You have inspired me greatly, and I have found more reason to never give up! Enjoy the journey! Yayyy!

    Comment by The West Coast Muse ~ Maryann Candito | July 26, 2012 | Reply

    • Thank you, Maryann. I love hearing this!

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 26, 2012 | Reply

  9. Congratulations, Katia! I knew this day would happen. I’m so so happy for you. Can’t wait to celebrate!

    Comment by nanmarino | July 27, 2012 | Reply

    • Thanks you, Nan! Yessss — celebrating with you — a sweet reward in its own right!

      Comment by Katia Raina | July 27, 2012 | Reply

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