Like millions of people, I have always loved the story of Esther–who wouldn’t?  To a girl, it’s a Cinderella story, and to a young woman, Esther is a heroine to admire.

I wanted to write Esther’s story right after I finished THE SHADOW WOMEN, years ago, but my publisher passed on the idea. And since a writer needs to write what her publisher wants, I put away all the books on ancient Persia I’d bought and decided to wait until . . . if . . . the right time came along.

Fast forward several years. My agent called and said that she’d been approached by a young woman in Hollywood who wanted to do a movie on Esther, but the young woman (wisely) knew that the best movies came from fully fleshed-out novels. Would I be willing to write a novel about Esther that could be optioned as the basis for a screenplay?

beautiful  woman in traditional indian costume

The cover I envisioned.

This is a highly unusual way to get an a novel started, but of course I jumped at the opportunity. I don’t know if you’re aware, but right now it’s difficult to make a living as  a novelist. Even established novelists are finding it difficult to sell their work, and advances are about a third of what they used to be.  So I was not only grateful for the work, I was grateful for an opportunity to write a complete manuscript that would be ready for submission once I’d finished.

So that is the beginning of the story.  Tune in tomorrow when I’ll write about the RESEARCH–yum!



  1. Rachel D. Laird

    Why are established authors finding it difficult to sell their work? Are people not reading like they used to do?

    I look forward to reading your next post.

    • Angie

      Many reasons, Rachel, and yes, one of them is that fewer people are reading. There are too many other things vying for their attention–even I read less than I used to. Second, there are fewer publishers (they keep buying each other up and merging), hence there are fewer slots for books to be published. Third, the economy hit everyone hard, so publishers are risk averse–they want to take books they KNOW will sell, so they are less willing to take a chance on “maybe” projects. Fourth, the rise in self-published books, particularly ebooks, has resulted in a general lowering of the sales price, and now people either expect to get books FREE or for less than $5.00–a price point publishers generally aren’t willing to accept, so their ebook sales suffer, and hence their income suffers, which means less $ to pay authors. These are just a few of the reasons. :-/

      • Rachel D. Laird

        Thanks for replying, Angie. I had no idea self-published books would drive the price of other books down. (I’m still toying with the idea of getting my story about Rahab published when the time comes.)

        I look forward to reading Esther. And Happy New Year to you as well.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.