Book Contract Leads to University Acceptance and More! By Christian Saunders

Ten years ago I worked in a packing factory, I had no qualifications, just a sack full of dreams. Every day after I finished my shift I would write short stories for my own enjoyment, and gather information and anecdotes for what would later become my book, Into the Dragon’s Lair: A Supernatural History of Wales.

The book took four years to research and write. I submitted it to numerous agents and publishers, none of whom were interested. Eventually, on the 12th or 14th submission, I had a stroke of luck and a small independent publisher in Wales called Gwasg Carreg Gwalch took a chance on me and published 2000 copies of the book.

Cue promotional appearances on local radio stations and reviews / interviews all over the Welsh press. Contrary to what a lot of people believed, I didn’t make a lot of money from my book (the agreement was that I would recieve 15% of the cover price, which was £6.50, with no advance). I didn’t care, the book opened so many doors for me.

On the strength of it I was accepted at university, left my packing job, and began freelancing for anyone who would publish my work and, to date, I have had around more than 30 pieces published in various places. My biggest pay day has come from a feature I did about rare Bruce Springsteen items for Record Collector that netted almost £500.

The message I would like to convey to WritersWeekly readers is… never give up, and dream on! I am living proof that sometimes, with enough hard work and good luck, dreams really do come true.

Hailing from the village of New Tredegar, South Wales, Christian Saunders began writing in 1997. His early fiction appeared in titles such as Asphalt Jungle, Raw Nerve, Roadworks and several anthologies. His book, Into the Dragon’s Lair – A Supernatural History of Wales, was published in 2003, shortly before he moved to Southampton, England, to study journalism at Solent University. After graduation he worked extensively in the freelance market, contributing to numerous international publications including Fortean Times, Bizarre, Urban Ink, Beyond, Record Collector, Maxim and Nuts, whilst fostering aspirations to become a world-famous rock music journalist. He now teaches English in Tianjin, northern China, whilst traveling the long road to enlightenment…