Girls Write Out
Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I'm celebrating 10 years at Thomas Nelson this week, and my terrific team presented me with the Key to the Company this morning. Sooo exciting! When I got up on stage with Ami, I choked up at how good they have been to me and what an exciting time these years have been. I've learned so much from them, and especially from Ami. 

Here's what these 10 years have taught me about longevity with one house and building a relationship with your team.

IMG 0687Be eager to accept your editors ideas for ways that will make your book better. Hold your book lightly. The project is a team effort. It's not just your baby. You are often too close to the work to see it clearly. Trust your editor/s.

Keep a close eye on the market and be nimble if you need to tweak your brand. My brand started out more 75% mystery and 25% romance but as Ami and I looked at sales and at what my readers wanted, we shifted my brand a bit to 60% romance and 40% mystery/suspense.

Vow to partner with your publishing house. Never think they are your adversary. Make sure you are not high maintenance. When you send emails, make sure they are encouraging and uplifting and not complaining. Make sure when your friends at your publishing house see your name pop up in their inbox, they WANT to read what you have to say. Don't be an author who makes them take a deep breath and cringe before they read the email.

Don't sweat the small stuff. Talk through problems with your team but don't raise a ruckus about things that don't matter. Don't take business decisions as personal slights. Demanding your way is the wrong move most of the time. You all have the same goal--to get your books into the hands of your readers. Communication works all the time. 

Stay abreast of what's happening in the market so you can discuss things intelligently with your publishing house. 

Do talk about ideas with your marketing and publicity team. But then leave the decisions up to them. Do your part but make sure your team knows what you're doing and agrees with it. They can save you money and effort if they've tried something that doesn't work. 

Be grateful for what your team does for you. Thank them. Send them a card or candy when they do something special like sell. 

I'm sure there are more things, but I'm too excited to think of them right now. LOL They also gave me a Pandora charm that looks like a house which represents Thomas Nelson. Love it! I happened to bring my Pandora bracelet with me so I got to put it on right away!

It's been a very exciting morning! I'm so blessed to get to work with the best group of people in the world. In case you can't read the inscription, it reads In Celebration of 10 Years. Colleen Coble bestselling author and Treasured Friend (my favorite part!) June 2012 Thomas Nelson Inc.

I'm a lucky girl!





Colleen Coble  
posted at 12:28 PM  
  Comments (15)
Delicious Delicious
At 12:55 PM, Blogger Judy Gann said...

Congratulations, Colleen--and Thomas Nelson!

Colleen, you are an example to all of us of how a successful author-publisher relationship should work. Thank you!

At 1:02 PM, Blogger Timothy Fish said...

I'm celebrating 15 years with my employer at the end of this week.

At 3:13 PM, Blogger jel said...


At 4:05 PM, Blogger Mary-Louise said...

Congratulations Colleen. That is awesome.

At 8:35 PM, Blogger Cheri said...

I'm so happy for you, I have always loved your books! My favorites are still the rescue dog series, the characters made me want to move to a community just like theirs.

You really deserve this award!

At 10:22 PM, Blogger Mary F. Allen said...

Colleen you are an inspiration and an example of how to be in a working relationship with publisher and others. So amazing. It raises Thomas Nelson in the eyes of writers as well. I am so happy for you. Take a victory lap on that new bike.

At 10:28 AM, Blogger glee said...

Congratulations! Well deserved reward for you and I look forward to reading more of your books this year. God bless as you faithfully continue in your service to God and others.

At 1:06 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Colleen, I'm so proud of you. Your attitude and willingness to work hard has made all the difference. Who wouldn't want to work with you? And I agree with your rules of working with the editors, thanking them for the effort they put into your books. What a sign of love when they spend that much time on you. May you have many, many more wonder years of working with them and climbing up the charts over and over to the top!

At 1:06 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Tim, fifteen years is a great accomplishment. Who have you worked with for fifteen years?

At 3:07 PM, Blogger jel said...

Hannah A,

We want Colleen to the top, but if she goes over,and over she will fall down, and we don't want that !

At 3:15 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

True, jel, we don't want our beloved Colleen to go splat! LOL

At 3:29 PM, Blogger jel said...

that would made for a bad day!

At 10:57 PM, Blogger Colleen Coble said...

Thanks for all the congrats, friends! what a fun week I've had!

At 12:28 PM, Blogger Rachel Hauck said...

Congrats, C!! Ten years! Amazing!


At 4:45 PM, Blogger jel said...

I'm glad ya didn't fall over the top! :) LOL


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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

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