So guys...the number one question I've been asked this week is "How does it feel?" This blog is an attempt to answer that...
Here's the thing. I was lowkey punked into publishing this book. I started writing to it prove to myself that I could start and complete a work in its entirety. Somewhere along the way it turned into this little story that I kinda liked, but didn't know if other people would. Then I shared it with my published friends and they liked it too...or were being nice to me because we were friends. I wasn't certain at this point. Then I let my bestie who isn't super into reading glance at the first two chapters and she liked it. And then I shared it with a friend who is an avid reader and semi-harsh critic and she liked it. By then I thought, okay...it's cute enough that none of my friends have said, "naw sis, hang it up"; maybe I should keep writing.
And I did. And got frustrated. Then had breakthroughs. And then finally typed the words, the end. That right there? Was enough for me, if we're being honest. I'd finally done it, after years of saying I was gonna do it, false starts, and bullshitting--I wrote an entire book (ish...novella type thing). Whew, I cried so hard after I typed the end. (If you follow me on Twitter, you know I'm heavy into crying...my emotions be so overwhelming!)
And then I sent it to my published friends and they said..."oh hey, this cute or whatever, but you ain't done." (Fun fact: The first completed draft of this book did not include the gondola fight in its entirety because I didn't like writing conflict. LOL). So I went back and I added and updated and edited and added and updated and edited again and then sat with the finished draft. I...well, honestly I was scared shitless.
What if no one read it? What if people did read it and hated it? Negative thoughts kept coming at full force until one of my friends said & I quote, "Oh bitch. Stop fucking around so I can buy this shit!" Profanity is my love language, so mere minutes after she said that I hit the publish button. And waited. Then felt immediate regret.
But then a funny thing happened. People who weren't my friends read it and...liked it. My friends who hadn't read it previously read it and liked it. The work was met with overwhelming positivity that made me cry so many times that I lost count, tbh. All of a sudden it was less the little book that could and more the little book that did. I'm completely blown away by the reception so far and honestly do not think I can put into words how every single comment, review, tweet, text, blog post, etc. has buoyed me over this past week.
I feel very Taylor Swiftian in my response when I see a new review that is glowing, but honestly I didn't expect fanfare. I didn't expect praise. I just wrote a story, hoping people would like it and if they didn't, they would tactfully decline to let me know. I was confident that I could write grammatically sound sentences, but was unsure of being able to write a story that would keep a reader riveted. So I can check that one off now. : )
The pressure is on though. I am currently in school full time, working full time, and allegedly beginning work on book two (Celena--not Cass & Ev. I don't think I'll ever write Cassett/Everidy, but that's a different story for a different day). I don't want to churn out something quickly to capitalize on this moderate level of success, but I also don't want to wait too long and lose my writing mojo. So I've begun outlining, have lined up a friend to bug about a hobby he shares with my hero and plan to tuck into writing soon.
But I just wanted to get this quick blog off to say thank you to each and every person who has read this book, whether you liked it or not, haha. I'm overwhelmingly honored that these lil crazy people inside my head are ones with whom you can relate and hope to be able to continue to write stories about our love that are both relatable and a little left of center.