Now that The Farther I Fall and As Lost as I Get are out, I think it’s safe to say that I am not going to be showing up on the NYT Bestseller lists any time soon, nor have I set the world on fire with my astonishing debuts.
And you know what? That’s okay!
All right, I’ll confess, it’s taken me a good part of this year to get to the point where I can honestly say “that’s okay.” Every aspiring writer dreams of getting that first book contract, and there’s an assumption that hey, once you have that, you are all set. Even though I knew, logically, that wasn’t necessarily true, deep in my heart, I think I still believed it. I just knew my books were going to grab attention. I had a Big Five publisher, didn’t I?
Let me sit here and wait while the more experienced among you finish laughing. 🙂
I don’t think I fully grasped just how many books are published at a given time, all clamoring for attention. And I definitely underestimated how difficult it is to find an audience. I had no clear idea how book marketing works. (Still working on that one.)
In a way, my path to publication was unbelievably fast. Any “dues” I paid, I paid in another genre over a decade ago. Within a year of submitting the full manuscript of Farther to my now-agent, I had a contract for two books. I know now that’s almost unheard of. I got incredibly lucky right out of the gate. So now, I feel like what I’m doing is a working apprenticeship. I still have to prove myself to my audience, and there’s only one way to do that.
Over the past month I’ve been doing a lot of looking ahead and a lot of planning. I’ve got some projects I’m working on that I’m super excited to share with you, even if I don’t quite know when or how you’re going to see them.
I’ve got two romantic suspense novels in the works. One is a third book in the same universe as Farther and Lost, where we get to spend more time with Samantha Tennison, Gwen’s sister, as she gets into trouble on her own and has a run-in with a very sexy FBI agent. The other is a little twist on the amnesiac heroine trope, where a woman going by the name of Em learns exactly what she’s running from with the help of a hottie hacker named Gabe. I’m hoping you’ll see both books sometime next year, so fingers crossed!
I’m also very close to debuting a second penname, this one for M/M romance. My romance writing roots are in M/M, and I’m looking forward to going back to it. Watch this space for more information.
It’s been a very interesting year around here, and having my debut behind me feels a little bit the way some people feel about losing their virginity: thank god that’s over with! 😉
Stick around. I’m more committed than ever to telling exciting stories, and if they make even a handful of people happy, then I’ve done my job.