I just realized how monumental next week is going to be.
- I am releasing the first book in my new, Love in Transit Series. Ticket to Forever.
- This will be my 20th. book release!
- I will be another year older when it does release. And this is a big one that ends with a 0.
Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would have a second career as a writer and that I would have 20 books published.
I can't help but think that the Universe put Elizabeth Lennox in my path to inspire and push me towards taking a chance and putting my fears of failure aside and just jumping in with both feet.
I will never forget the feeling of finishing my first book, Sweet Surrender. I wished my mom were alive because she would have been so proud and she would have loved the story. She would have recognized pieces of our history in that story. My mom is the one that gave me my love of books.
After writing Sweet Surrender I never planned to do anything with it, other than knowing that I had been able to do what I always dreamed of doing. But after I got up the courage to let a real author, Ms. Lennox, read it, she had other ideas and suggested/nagged me to independently publish the book.
If you think it would be an easy decision, you would be wrong. This took a lot of soul searching. I thought my story was good. I only wrote it for me. If I published it, I would be opening up something I created and cherished to a whole lot of criticism. Was I strong enough to not let unkind words hurt? Constructive criticism I have no problem with. That helps me grow. It's the hurtful, dream killing, words that I know some people enjoy spreading around that I didn't want to get inside my head and fester.
This decision took about six months. And while I was trying to decide, Mari's sister got inside my head demanding her own story. So I started Sweet Denial, not even knowing if I could write another story. Did I have another one inside me?
You need to understand that I don't have a background in writing or anything even remotely close. College Freshman English is as far as my education goes in that area. If I was going to publish Sweet Surrender, I knew I needed to have it edited. Of course I had no clue how to find an editor, and I certainly didn't have the money to pay for that service. But I knew someone I respected and is probably the smartest person I know. But...did I want to tell her?
I kept my writing a secret for the first few years. Actually some folks still have no clue. With a lot of scary emotions I told my friend about my book and asked if she'd proofread it for me.
Later, she told me how relieved she was when she liked the book because she had no idea what she was going to tell me if she hated it. I won't go into all the grammar lessons she had to give me. It seems I wouldn't stick to one tense. I flip-flopped between first and third and I mixed up POV's.
It was about a year after I finished Sweet Surrender that I took the plunge into the independently published world. By now I'd finished writing Sweet Denial and my friend was involved with work and couldn't edit this one.
Again, I screwed up my courage and asked another friend to edit for me. I know I completely shocked her by admitting I was writing books, contemporary romance books at that!
She agreed, and after she read the story she said she could never look at me the same way! Technically, I don't think I'm old enough to be her mother, but it has to be close. I could understand.
I mean my real daughter has never read any of my books to date! Actually, none of my family members have read all my books. Maybe one or two books but that's it.
Both of these incredible women have been supporters from the very beginning of my writing career and I hope they know how much I appreciate what they did for me.
Thanks for letting me take this trip down memory lane as my 20th book is waiting to be published in only a few more days. A lot has changed. I have evolved as a writer. I will continue to challenge myself with new projects that I hope you will enjoy.
Thanks for being part of my ride.