From the tiny bit I’ve seen so far, publishing seems a little more old-fashioned than some other industries, with deals moving forward based on one’s word and a (virtual) handshake. For example, news of Harper Voyager acquiring Polaris Rising was announced well before the contract was officially signed.
In fact, the deal was announced before I even saw the contract. I knew the overall terms, of course, but the nitty gritty details were hashed afterwards by my agent and the publishing house.
Last week I received the super-duper-official signed contract and my very first advance check! I’m officially a Harper Voyager author! It still feels a little unreal and I can’t believe how incredibly lucky I’ve been.
I also got the initial edits back from my editor, so the next step is for me to dive back in and make Polaris Rising even better!