The Biggest News Yet

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This is a post literally decades in the making…

Today, Publisher’s Weekly listed this in their Deals: “Debut author Tyler Hayes's THE IMAGINARY CORPSE, pitched as Raymond Chandler meets THE VELVETEEN RABBIT for adults…”

I’ve sold a novel.

Angry Robot Books has bought The Imaginary Corpse, and is publishing it in 2019.

The Imaginary Corpse is my debut novel. I am a debut author.

I want to say so much and at the same time I want to say nothing. When I got the offer from Angry Robot, I literally froze in place for a second. An editor — a stranger — told me that they loved my story, that they wanted to pay for the right to put it on their list. Two sets of strangers, at Kimberley Cameron & Associates and at Angry Robot, believed in me enough to make my career a part of their careers. To make my story a part of their careers.

It’s not just that I’ve sold a novel that brings me so much joy (though God, that too and that so much!); it’s that my debut novel gets to be this novel. The Imaginary Corpse is a book of my heart, an idea that sprung from ideas I’ve had for my entire conscious life, that is based on my desire to write something that was thoughtful and kind; to write me instead of writing the people who influenced me. I love this book — I loved brainstorming it and I loved writing it and I loved editing it — but I was actually getting ready to trunk it when the offer from Angry Robot came in. I had literally come to the conclusion just weeks before this all went down that letting it come out later in my career was OK; and then I was told that no, this book is happening. That someone believed in this story. That the book of my heart is going to be real and out there for people to buy and read and love. I’ve already had a stranger tell me it “sounds so good” on Twitter.

It’s real. I’ve sold my first novel.

Today has been a day of people Liking my posts and sending congratulations, and it’s been such a powerful reminder of how fortunate I am. I’ve not always had the best luck with people, and not always had the best self-esteem; and I am so grateful that now, today, when the dream I’ve been chasing finally stopped and waited for me, I am celebrating it with people I admire and love and respect, and who admire and love and respect me, people who value growth, who value empathy, who care about people. That I could achieve this pinnacle with my eyes wide open and my neurotransmitters properly medicated and the knowledge that yes, I do deserve this, and yes, it’s OK to be proud.

There will be a million updates about this in the coming months: cover reveals, giveaways, frequently asked questions, everything I’ve been looking forward to doing. But for now, I just want to say: thank you. Thank you to everyone who has believed in me; to my family who bought me writing books and gave me time to write and cheered me on; to Sonya, who has always supported my writing career and who was the first person to tell me this book had legs; to the Isle of Write, who held me up when I got low and gave me a space to both celebrate and freak out, and made me feel like a part of a community in a way I rarely ever do; to C.L. Polk, who told me from the first time she heard about it that this book was a good book; and to every friend who ever liked a post or beta-read a story or had me sign an anthology or otherwise helped me build to this day. To this dream.

I’m going to get offline and go celebrate — Paul Sheldon has Dom Perignon and a cigarette, I have whiskey and Caesar salad and Sentinels of the Multiverse — but again, and forever, thank you all. I am so looking forward to bringing this weird and wonderful book into the world and into your hands. And then tomorrow…it’s time to get moving on the next one.