The First Publishing Vet (Holly Schindler)


Not the first vet ever, but the first I bumped into. 

Here's how it all started:

I needed a blurb.

In early 2009, my first book, a YA, was acquired by a pub house. (Finally! After 7 years of submitting! A real contract! A book!) I knew no one, really. And now I needed to get out there and ask a bunch of strangers for a quote for the cover?


I waded out into the request waters, getting in touch with some of my favorite YA authors working in the same subgenre (contemporary). They'd all been in similar places, and they were certainly all gracious. But one pretty much made my year.

Catherine Ryan Hyde agreed to read A Blue So Dark, with the expected stipulations (might not get to it, might not finish in time, might not want to blurb). I agreed to all of it--all I could ask for was a shot. 

When she'd finished, she sent me an email that basically said, I read it. It's really good. And said she was working on the blurb. 

At the time, I thought: That's perfect for me: "I read it. It's really good."--Catherine Ryan Hyde.

But it didn't stop there. We've been in touch ever since. I've always been able to shoot her questions--I talked to her when I felt I needed to leave an agent but wasn't sure how to approach it. I talked to her about the ins and outs of indie publishing. I've always known I can reach out and she'll have sharp insight. 

It stuck with me, how kind and open she'd always been to me. Now, more than a decade later, I'm always sure to share my own experience, if it can be of help to a newer author. 

Hopefully, a decade down the road, that author will be providing the same kind of help...


Holly Schindler is the author of  books for readers of all ages. Her MG, The Junction of Sunshine and Lucy, was the Master List Finalist for her home state of Missouri's Mark Twain Award.


  1. I've had similar experience and am amazed and encouraged by the kindness and generosity of authors who come many...including you Holly, who have graciously read my manuscript s and provided blurbs. Passing it on when I can is a small way to say thank uou...


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