Jumping in…

Over the last 18 years or so, I’ve written hundreds of press releases, news articles, and business publications, but it was just yesterday that I truly became an author.

For me, it all started back in December 2008. I was reading alot of paranormal romance. It was a genre that I was never really interested in before, but with all the hype around Twilight, I was giving it a go. As I jumped from one book to the next, from one series to the next, a thought started to develop in my tiny brain. Hey, I could write this stuff.

So that’s how it started. It was just something for fun. I never planned to do anything with what I wrote. I wasn’t even sure that I’d get past the first chapter. I continued to fiddle with it for an entire year. By the end of 2009, my project had found a home on the back burner.

But soon, the thought started nagging at me again. In early 2010, I began to notice that several of the books I was reading were published by indie authors. By mid 2010, I had pulled out the book that I started in 2008. I made many revisions and gave it out to a few beta readers. I finally worked up the courage to test the waters and I entered a large first-time novel contest at the end of the year.

Well, needless to say, I didn’t win. However, I believe my novel did stay in the running far into judging (or maybe it was just at the bottom of the pile). I wasn’t writing for the money, so it didn’t feel right to start shopping my book among agents. I was ready to shrug it off when my mother said something to me that I will never forget. She said, “In life, we have to be bold.” 

Now, please understand, she wasn’t talking about the book I had written.  She was talking about my whole attitude at the time. I had been a public relations pro for many years. I was the person in the background making sure that the folks I work for are the ones in the spotlight. When it comes to myself, I tend to remain hidden. I still do.

I thought of many reasons why I shouldn’t consider self publishing. Will my friends think I’m weird for writing about tooth fairies, Atlantis, and gremlin-like creatures? Will my work colleagues disrespect me for writing romance? Will my family be embarrassed? Will the old ladies at church look down on me? Then I realized that these weren’t reasons at all, just fear. It was the fear of “What will people think?” My problem was that I wasn’t living life boldly.

I remembered what I wanted to get out of it when I first started back in 2008. I was doing it for fun. What could be more fun than seeing your own creation being read and discussed?

So, we fast forward to 2011. I’ve made many, many more revisions and edits. I got a nervous twitch in my stomach as I applied for copyright registration (the publicly filed part). I got goosebumps on the day that I received my ISBN (it’s really happening). Yesterday, my first book Of Sun & Moon became available for sale on Amazon Kindle. A paperback version is in the works and should be available within the next two weeks as well as an eBook version for non-Kindle formats. If nothing else comes of it, I’ll never regret it. I’ve had a great time already.