As I sit at my computer on the eve of book release number eight–after spending 20 minutes fixing the WiFi router update snafu…seriously, who clicks “update” on a night like this?!–instead of looking ahead, I find myself circling back to some of the “truths” I’ve learned along the way. And, as I’m often asked many of the following questions, I figured what the heck, why not share?
Please note: these answers are my own. Every author is different, as are their experiences. Sort of. Not really.
Truth #1: Nothing in this industry happens quickly. In my early days, I would hit “send” on a query letter, or a submission to a publisher, and literally stare at the screen willing a response to pop up. Ah, those were the good old days…(not!) Over time, you learn to click “send” and redirect your energies elsewhere while someone on the other end chooses whether or not to read/respond to your submission. Hopefully, they will. Meanwhile, there’s laundry to be done, dinner to be cooked, kids to
annoy cuddle, and a hundred other books waiting to be written.
Truth #2: No, I cannot quit my day job. Will writing every launch me into that blissful worry-free financial atmosphere? One can only hope. Meanwhile, there’s laundry to be done, dinner to be cooked, kids to
annoy cuddle, a hundred other books waiting to be written, oh, and a day job to be worked.
Truth #4: Writing allows you to break the rules so long as you make it believable. Probably my favorite of the truths, and why I toggle between contemporary and fantasy romance.
Truth #3: (You didn’t really think I’d shun 3 altogether, did you?) That old saying about needing thick skin if you’re going to be an author? Yep, pretty much true. Some people are better at it than others, and even the ones fairly good at it have their ups and downs. But at the end of the day, you choose what you want to allow to define you. If you let the one not-so-glowing review ruin your day when there’s a dozen much more complimentary ones beside it, well, that’s your choice. Me, I’d rather keep cranking out more books…and shooing the cat off my keyboard.
Truth #5: “Oh, you write romance?” Insert eye roll. Yes, I do. No, it’s not for everyone. No, my books are not 50 shades of anything. Most of my back list is maybe 3 or 4 shades of something at the most. A few go higher. But if you want 50, I’ll point you in that direction. Trust me, I know people. (P.S. I’ve been known to kill off a few people in my novels. Eye roll any harder, and the next one just might be named after you…)
Truth #6: Speaking of knowing people…the online writing community is, for the most part, an absolutely fantastic, supportive group. Yes, there will always be the one or two hooligans who try to tip the apple cart for a bit of publicity (just look at Twitter right now, hashtag Irefusetogivethistopicanyextraattention). But some of my current closest friends are fellow authors, several of which I’ve not met in person, and I don’t know where I’d be today without them.
Truth #7: Writing and working and momming…it ain’t easy. But then, no one ever said it would be. Doesn’t make me want to write any less. And though the kids joke about Mommy going “type, type, type” they still see me plenty. Can’t write when they’re around anyway. (I need quiet! LOL) The truth of the matter is this: if you want to write, you’ll make time. I’ve had a lot of people come up to me over the years, talking about this book they always wanted to write, but who has the time, right? Yes, who indeed? *smh*
Truth #8: Darn near every book title I’ve come up with has gotten axed at some point along the way. And while I understand the marketing behind it, digging back through old files can become quite confusing at times. Redeeming Grace? Sand Dollar Hearts? The Lion, the Witch, and the Wayward Knight?! It’s a good thing I have numbers in front of all those names, or I’d never keep them all straight. So if you’re starting to write a book but hung up on the title. Let it go…let it go…
And because it’s now May 8th (thanks to the router faux pas) and book 8 should be landing in my Kindle any minute, I’ll stop there. Gotta leave more truths for book 9 (due out later this summer) and 10 (fingers crossed that one finds a home soon…it’s a huge fan of Truth #4). Many thanks to all of you, many of which have watched my collection grow from nothing to now. Hopefully, there’ll be many, many more truths and novels to come.
Happy Tuesday, everyone!