Jumping Up & Down & Clapping & Cheering!

Maggie, 1962

The very best thing EVER (besides good news for yourself) is good news for someone you care about and who deserves it more than you can possibly say.  And that would be what has just happened to our friend Maggie Stuckey!

First of all, you need to know that Maggie “has paid her dues.”  She left North Carolina in 1962  with a degree in English and has never looked back.  She headed for New York where she had a secretarial job waiting for her with a big publishing house.  Soon she was working as a copy editor, first for one publisher, then another.

“I lived in New York City (Upper West Side) for ten years; best time of my life,” she says.  “The economy was very strong; if you got tired of your job, you could quit and walk across the street and get another one the same day.”

In 1970, she moved to Los Angeles, “for what turned out be three very insignificant years,” she says.  “Then, in 1973 I fell in love and moved to Portland; today the boyfriend is gone, but I’m still here.”

About that time, she began writing — for other people as a ghost writer and for herself.  She’s written books about gardening and books about food.  Like us, you may even have her Soup Night on your kitchen shelf.

Last Spring, as we were all getting used to The Sheltering Times, Maggie came up with a new book idea.  She pitched it to her agent; her agent, Heather, contacted a few publishers and on October 3rd she wrote:  “This past week, things started popping. Two, then three, then four of the editors who received the proposal from my agent asked for a phone visit with me.  Four!  Wow…”

The upshot:  all were interested and so Maggie’s agent planned an auction for the publishing rights.  Maggie:  “Those calls happened last Tuesday and the day before, and that is undoubtedly the last of them. Because now we move on to the next phase.  Which is that Heather plans to check in with each of those four on Monday, to try to tease out just how serious is their interest. She has already made it clear that she intends to “close out” everything by the first of the week because she is planning an auction for Thursday or Friday.  An auction!  Holy s**t! I’ve never been in that position before…  Keep your fingers crossed for me.”

Smiling Maggie!

We did.  And yesterday she wrote:  “My new book is going to be published by a unit of Harper Collins. The financial terms are astonishing (the advance is almost three times more than the highest advance I ever received), and I really really like the publisher (the human being, not the company; well, I like the company too).  Pub date set for March 2022, delivery date March 2021 – both approximate.  In the final analysis, the 4-way auction dropped down to only two serious bidders, both Harper imprints. What an extraordinary experience for an author. I can’t stop smiling.”

Neither can we!



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