The Obsession will be published by Sourcebooks!

The Obsession will be published by Sourcebooks!


I don't know how long I've dreamed of writing this thread, but finally, here it is. I have a book deal! Actually, I have a two-book deal!

Book deal announcement for Jesse Q Sutanto

I can't even describe how long and twisty the journey has been, so here are the stats:

  • Books written: I have just finished my EIGHTH bloody manuscript. *lolsob*
  • Books that died on sub: 6.
  • Number of times I went on sub across all agents: 8.
  • Number of times an editor has loved my books, only to be cockblocked at acquisitions: 6, and I remember exactly each and every one of these close calls.
  • Number of times I have sobbed in the shower/on the floor/in some dark corner: Lost count, but at least 6, one for each of those close calls.
  • Number of years spent trying to get published: 8.
  • Number of years I have aged in that time: Well, being Asian, I won’t age until I hit 50, when a switch will flip and I will turn into a little old lady overnight. But emotionally, about 712.
  • Book that got me the book deal: Lucky number 5!

A little bit about this book’s journey...I wrote it in 2016 for Camp Nano. It was a mess. My betas pointed out some really major issues which would take so much time to fix that my lazy ass decided to trunk it and move on to New Shiny. But then I decided to enter it into the Beta Project here on AW, just on a whim, and in writing a query for it, I realized that it had a great hook. So out of the trunk it came. I edited and sent to my agent. He loved it, but said it felt like it was lacking something. I agreed, but neither of us really knew what that something was. Books 6 and 7 were finished and sent to my agent, who started subbing them, and we both kind of forgot about 5. Then my agent read a book about a stalker and had a major brainwave. He pinpointed the issue with 5. I edited madly and finally, over 2.5 years after I finished the first draft, 5 went out into the world. By this time, I’d been out on sub so many times, with so many different books, that getting published seemed like a wild dream that would never ever happen to me. I didn’t get excited at the thought of being on sub, because I knew it would just end in disappointment.

Welp. I am very happy to be proven wrong. Also I’m kind of sitting in wonder thinking how, at one point, I’d trunked 5 and would’ve never looked at it again if not for the Beta Project. So here’s to trunked books. May they keep coming back and nipping our ankles and demanding to be heard. And here’s to AW, without doubt the best resource there is for aspiring writers.

Aaaand that is my ridiculously long journey to publication.

Book 5, in pictures:

Me writing the first draft of the book with Kiddo.

Jesse Q Sutanto writing with baby

Kiddo on the week I got the offer.

Jesse Q Sutanto writing baby all grown up

They weren't kidding when they say publishing moves slowly!