Blogaversary Day 2: From Skydiving to Getting an Agent by David Estes + Giveaway!

June 6, 2014 Blogaversary, Giveaway, Interviews/ Guest Posts 10

It’s Boricuan Bookworm’s first year, and as part of the celebration, different authors will be stopping by to talk about different first experiences.

David Estes is here with us today, and he has generously donated some books for giveaway. Check out the rafflecopter link at the end of the post!

Without further ado, check out David’s wonderful post about some memorable first experiences he’s had:

 

First Times: From Skydiving to Getting an Agent

One of the most beautiful things about life is getting to experiencing so many things for the first time. Some first times, like taking your first step or saying your first word, are as much fun for those watching—the proud parents. Other first times get your heart pumping and are almost indescribable, like a first kiss. And the coolest thing of all is that your first times NEVER run out. No matter what age you are, no matter how much you’ve experienced, there are always more out there. There are always more first times for those who are willing to seek them out.

Two of my most memorable first times have come in the last five years, and though they appear very different at first glance, upon closer inspection they’re similar in a lot of ways. Skydiving and getting an agent.

I went skydiving shortly after I moved to Australia. It was a spur of the moment thing. Someone asked me and I was at a stage in my life where I was very open to trying new things. So I said yes.

IT WAS AWESOME! The entire experience was so surreal, from watching those jumping before me just disappear into the oblivion of the sky, to my own jump, which took my breath away and sent my heart screaming into my head. The free fall was thrilling, watching the earth get closer and closer, until the straps of my parachute (thankfully) tugged me back up, where I was able to float lazily toward the beach, where we landed. It was a first I’ll never forget.

Becoming an accountant-turned-author and getting an agent was almost like skydiving. I’m not kidding. When you’ve been on a conservative career path your entire life, and suddenly your wife convinces you to take a risk and quit your well-paying job and focus solely on writing young adult books for a living…that’s as close a feeling to jumping out of a plane as I’ve ever experienced. It’s scary as hell, but thrilling, too. Rewarding in so many ways, but a choice you worry about on almost a daily basis. Can I really make it? Do I really have what it takes?

Thank God for my wife, Adele, having enough backbone for the both of us. Although it was my own will that decided I was brave enough to jump out of a plane, it was Adele that believed in me enough to push me to take my writing career to the next level. And I’m SO GLAD she did!

Like skydiving, the initial parts were 50% exciting/50% frightening—like a free fall. I was selling so few books (of my debut series, The Evolution Trilogy) and watching our savings melt away. But Adele didn’t give up on me and I didn’t give up on myself. I learned from my mistakes, I learned from the successes of others, and I wrote two new series, which eventually became a combined 7-book YA dystopian series, The Dwellers/Country Saga. In its early days, the series sold much better than my debut series, but still not nearly enough to support us. But the reviews were good, I was gaining new readers each day, and I kept working hard. I met many unbelievably generous, kind and energetic readers who eventually became my biggest supporters, and the cornerstone of my Street Team, Estes Angels (you know who you are). Then a miracle happened.

Buzzfeed wrote an article called 15 Series to Read if you Enjoyed The Hunger Games. Suddenly I was getting dozens of e-mails, Tweets, and Facebook messages congratulating me on the article. I clicked into it and scrolled down past 14 bestselling big-published series, including Divergent, The Mortal Instruments, and Graceling, to find The Dwellers Saga as number 15 on the list. It was A MIRACLE. From there, sales ramped up until I was selling more than 1,000 books a month. An agent contacted me, and within a week I had a contract for representation. There have been film option inquiries (for The Moon Dwellers), although none of them have panned out so far. I’ve now sold more than 22,000 books in the last 18 months or so. And all because I stepped out of the metaphorical plane that was my safe career as an accountant.

All of the firsts I’ve experienced over the last five years have been special. ALL of them, even the not-so good ones, like my first 1-star review. Good or bad, all firsts are important, because they mold who we are and who we become. It’s up to us whether our firsts will make us better and stronger, or break us. We decide.

Although my agent and I are still seeking the elusive major publishing deal for a few of my new projects, I know it will come with time. If I work hard enough and am patient enough and always seek to do right by my incredibly supportive readers, my parachute will always open and I’ll be able to experience yet another beautiful first in my life. So here’s to firsts, my friends. Don’t be scared of them, appreciate them!

David Estes

About David Estes

David Estes was born in El Paso, Texas but moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania when he was very young. David grew up in Pittsburgh and then went to Penn State for college. Eventually he moved to Sydney, Australia where he met his wife. A reader all his life, he began writing novels for the children’s and YA markets in 2010, and started writing full time in June 2012. Now he travels the world writing with his wife, Adele. David’s a writer with OCD, a love of dancing and singing (but only when no one is looking or listening), a mad-skilled ping-pong player, and prefers writing at the swimming pool to writing at a table.

Giveaway!

There will be 3 winners for this giveaway! David was generous enough to donate an ebook copy of his book The Moon Dwellers, an ebook copy of Fire Country, and an ebook copy of What Tomorrow May Bring to Giveaway! To enter, click on the Rafflecopter link below.

  • Open Internationally
  • Duplicate Entries will be erased.
  • LYING on an entry will result in the discualification of the participant.
  • Must be 13 or older to Participate

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for Celebrating with us today! Come back tomorrow for more awesome Giveaways!

Check out previous Giveaways in this Blogaversary by clicking, here.

Marianne and Jennifer
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We're two Puertorican girls who want to share our love of reading with the world. We sometimes substitute words for GIFS and either rant or fangirl a lot in our reviews. Talk to us about anything! 🙂
  • Sheniel

    I’ve always wanted to skydive and this just inspires me even more to do so! I’ve struggled with the thought of being a writer, but I’m glad to know that it is possible.

  • Woah…that’s some serious success right there! Congrats to David Estes! I haven’t read this series yet, and I’ve only briefly heard of it…but I’m totally interested. 😉

  • Great post! I can’t imagine what that feels like because I am neither an author nor have I been skydiving 😉 But I think it would be awesome to experience one or both firsts! Although I hate that heart in your throat feeling, so scary!

  • David is an awesome author and I really enjoyed this post! Skydiving would be completely amazing, but I’m really scared of it too.

    • I definitely would not be able to skydive alone. I’d have to be clutching on to the instructor on that one. Lol.

  • You would seriously have to push me out of the plane. My sister went not to long ago, and told me all about it. I would love to try, but I mean it, someone would have to push me. Totally scared of heights! Great post!

  • I’ve been dying to read the Moon Dwellers. Skydiving is something my fear of hights will never let me do.

  • Oh skydiving sounds so amazing and freeing!! I’ve been parasailing before… that was awesome!!!