Last week, I did a series of Tweets in response to the #ShareYourRejection hashtag. In it, I talked about how I was rejected by over 50 agents before one signed me. Then, my book was rejected by every single editor in its first round of submissions. In its second round of submissions, only one editor wanted it. That editor was Erika Tsang from Avon/HarperCollins, and the book was Halfway to the Grave. Yesterday, my agent emailed me with the subject line of “Goodreads Top 50!” Of course, I clicked the link as fast as I could.
So yesterday, Goodreads posted a list of their top 50 Fantasy books, their requirements being a 4-star minimum rating plus an unspecified minimum number of reviews. I saw many iconic names in the list, such as J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings), C.S. Lewis (The Chronicles of Narnia), Stephen King (The Stand, Green Mile), George R.R. Martin (Game of Thrones), Neil Gaiman (Neverwhere, Sandman), as well as some of my current favorites (hi, BFF Ilona Andrews for the Kate Daniels series!), Patricia Briggs for the Mercy Thompson series, and Kim Harrison for the Hollows series. I also saw two of my all-time childhood favorites, Watership Down by Richard Adams and The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. I cannot tell you what those stories meant to me as a child and pre-teen. In fact, Winston the alcoholic ghost in Halfway to the Grave was inspired by the skeleton in The Last Unicorn that demanded an empty bottle of liquor so he could “remember” the taste before he’d tell the unicorn the fate of her people.
I mention all this so you can appreciate what I felt when I saw Halfway to the Grave listed among these books. I won’t lie – I started to tear up a little. Then I hit “refresh” on the page a few times because I half expected to see my title disappear due to its listing being a mistake. It didn’t (as of writing this, it’s still there. Yes – I kept checking, heh.) Somehow, it not only has the required 4+ stars, it also has over 120K ratings from readers *faints.* Do I think it belongs among these iconic titles, some of which helped foster my love of fantasy and reading as a child? Of course not! Am I so, so thrilled that it’s there anyway? YOU BETCHA.
Thank you, everyone who had a hand in this. You truly make dreams come true :). For the complete Top 50 Goodreads Fantasy list, go HERE .