My first venture out of the gates. It’s been a long process since I put the first line down on paper. I will say it is rather intimidating, putting yourself out there for others to catch a glimpse into your heart and soul, hoping their responses are kind. I never realized just how personal it would feel until I clicked the PUBLISH button. Sending my fledgling offspring off into time and space without knowing how it would be received left me holding my breath. I can now say I am an author, not just a writer, though they are both one and the same. I am published, I have a ISBN, it is official.
After PUBLISH came the What-ifs, like swallows, they circled me around for days afterward, flitting in and out of view.
What if…no one notices? I am new to marketing, at least from this side of it. Sure, I’ve watched many commercials and know I am part of someone’s target audience. I even like being convinced to spend my hard-earned money on things I think will improve my life. But! How do I do that from the other side of the fence, now that my book is the item to be sold? How do I get people to notice my book in the vast sea of books out there to be read?
What if…no one buys it? That, I will admit is the smallest what-if that swirled around me. I want readers, not buyers. Why do I want that? I want to touch someone’s heart through my words, to inspire, to warm them, to comfort them, and even, to help them grow a little. Before I can do that, they have to be drawn to want that input from me, to think it is worth their time and investment to read my book. Buyers will come, readers are earned.
What if…they read it and don’t like it? The perfectionist in me yells it’s not ready yet, you can do better. It took seven years from the first words on the page to the published version. The delay was not in the writing or the editing, but the feeling like I would never measure up, that what I had to say wasn’t worth reading. Cara’s Place endured years of neglect because of those fears. But there comes a time when one has to look fear in the eye and do it anyway if there is to be any hope of moving on. As the Nike ad says, Just do it! (swoosh!)
I am well into finishing my second book, the third outlined and waiting in the wings, titles and themes for more line up beyond that. They are like children, each unique in their own right, each with their own path to walk. They will each take their place on the bookshelf and become what they are meant to be. But first, Cara’s Place had to step out onto the stage, into the spotlight, to make room for the those coming behind. Will they read it and like it? Time will tell. Even if they don’t, I will keep writing in hopes that one day, someone will like the next book, or the next.
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