Being an author is AMAZING! Except when it’s not. Expectations vs. reality for the debut author.

A few years ago I was on a panel with several other authors, and a teacher in the audience stood up to ask a question. It was something like, “We have several students who want to be published authors, but they’re frustrated at the amount of work and time that it takes. What would you say to them?”

And another author on the panel jokingly said something like, “I’d tell them to do something else and enjoy a long and happy life.”

It was funny and it made people laugh.

It was also kind of true.

Another story. I recently received an email from a young writer who’d gotten some feedback about his work and he was looking to pay for editorial services to help him make it better. I let him know where to find some editors, as well as giving him some advice on how to clean up the manuscript himself. He admitted that he wasn’t any good at self-editing and didn’t want to put in the time.

If this were a movie, you’d hear the screech of a record needle right about here.

Regardless of whether you publish traditionally or on your own, it generally stands to reason that writing and self-editing the book is the easy part. When you write, it’s just you and the story. When you edit your own work, all the changes are your own. You are 100% in control. If you’re not under contract, you don’t even have to worry about time limits. You can write on Tuesday night or wait until Saturday. You can write five words or five hundred or five thousand. Doesn’t matter.

When you’re publishing professionally (in the traditional sense), you have an agent who will have his/her own thoughts about your work, and you’ll have to make changes. You’ll then have an editor who will have his/her own thoughts, and AGAIN, you’ll have to make changes. Then you’ll get to copyedits, and you’ll have to make changes AGAIN. This is not a complaint, it’s just reality. I’ve said before that a book is not a child, but it makes for an easy analogy. It’s like raising a child for five years and suddenly having a bunch of people swoop in and offer commentary on your parenting. “Oh, he doesn’t know how to place a napkin on his lap before eating? We’ll have to fix that.”

Here’s the thing: all this input on your work is great. We all have the same goal: to make the book as good as it can be. I love working with my editor and my agent. I can’t emphasize that enough. My point is that it’s more WORK, and sometimes it’s hard to move beyond the knee-jerk reaction of HOW DARE YOU CRITICIZE MY PERFECT CHILD *cough* I mean STORY. Beyond that, sometimes these changes need to be made really fast. It’s not uncommon to need a substantial rewrite to be done in a matter of weeks, if not days.

But let’s get beyond the editing part of it. I think everyone realizes that the writing and editing are going to be part of the game, right? When you get right down to it, that’s what you’re signing up for. You might not be ready for the amount of work involved, but that’s not a slap in the face, really. You knew you were going to be in for something when you first set out to be a published author.

What took me by surprise was the amount of promotion required. Before selling my first novel, I was already active on Twitter and Facebook and I blogged somewhat regularly. But when your first book is released, you need to do blog tours and interviews and guest posts. I cannot say how grateful I am to the multitudes of book bloggers who have read and reviewed my books and helped get the word out there, especially those of you who have participated in or organized blog tours. Again, none of this post is a complaint. I’m talking about expectations versus reality. It’s one thing to answer a blog interview for someone who wants to help you spread the word about your books, and entirely another to gracefully field yet another email that says, “If you want to send me all the books in your series via snail mail, I’ll think about reading and reviewing them on Amazon.” (Yes, really.) Or an email that says, “I offered a full set of your signed books as a contest to go along with my review. Here’s where to send them.” (When the reviewer has never even asked if this is OK.) Or the numerous emails that say, “I found you on Goodreads and your books look really interesting. Can you send me a free copy?” (None of these are direct quotes, and they’re so frequent that I’m not singling out ANYONE.)

All of this promotion takes a ton of time and money. I don’t get free books, and any postage costs come out of my own pocket. (I spent almost a thousand dollars in postage last year. Before you roll your eyes, wait until we get to the part about financial realities.) Writing guest posts or character interviews takes a ton of time, and that’s after you actually think of something interesting to say. I spent a long time (three hours) writing a specifically requested guest post on why I added a gay character to the Elemental series. When the post went live, I retweeted it, only to get smacked in the face by a response asking why I thought I deserved special attention for writing a gay character.

Again, NOT A COMPLAINT. REALITY.

And that brings me to my next point: you’re doing all this promotion in the public eye. In this day and age, people have no hesitation expressing their thoughts on the internet. (Hi, I’m doing it right now.) They have no hesitation telling you exactly what they think of your work. Hell, people have no problem criticizing my TWEETS, much less an entire book. Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion, but it’s one thing to believe that, and entirely another to read something online that’s absolutely trashing your book. To stick with the child analogy, it’s the difference between knowing your son isn’t going to be liked by everyone he meets and overhearing someone actually saying, “That kid is a real asshole.” I will always stand by the belief that all reviewers are entitled to say whatever they want. Once a book is published, it’s out of my hands and it’s out there for the reader. That doesn’t mean the commentary doesn’t hurt sometimes. Especially when it’s directly emailed to me, along the lines of a recent message that told me I was killing my career by pushing my political agenda in my books. (And here I thought I was telling a story. Go figure.)

Right from the start, you’ve got to make a decision: you can read reviews and acknowledge that there’s nothing you can do about them (What are you going to do, change someone’s mind by protesting? Come on.) or you can completely ignore reviews and pretend they don’t exist.

While we’re talking about social media, it’s both a blessing and a curse. I love (LOVE!!) being able to communicate with readers and other writers. I have made so many friends on Twitter and Facebook that I’ve lost count. At the same time, it can be really, really, REALLY discouraging to go from glee over a five figure advance — and then five minutes later seeing someone post that they got a six figure deal. Or that they hit the New York Times Bestseller list. Or that they’re going to be a featured speaker at a conference that you can’t even afford to attend. Or how about feeling proud that you got the kids to bed and wrote 1,000 words before falling asleep on the laptop, then seeing someone tweet that they wrote 10,000 words today?

You run into this in all walks of life (like when you buy your first home and think it’s stunning, but then six months later, your college roommate buys a home that costs twice as much). But when you’re a writer on social media, you see this all day long. I love seeing people celebrate their victories, so this isn’t a dig at those people AT ALL. I’m sure people see some of my tweets/posts and feel the same way. Again, this post is all about the reality of being a published author. One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever heard about being a writer was “Keep your eyes on your own paper.” So true. If Twitter and Facebook is starting to get you down, step away from the computer. There was a recent article about how you shouldn’t be “that writer” on Facebook who talks about her successes. That’s bullshit. Talk about your success. Better advice would be to not be that writer who lets someone else’s success tear her down. Books are not vacuum cleaners. If someone buys a book by another author, it doesn’t mean they can’t buy yours. If someone writes 10,000 words a day, that doesn’t mean that your 1,000 words suck. If social media is getting you down, TURN IT OFF.

Money. I’ve talked about the financial realities of being a writer before, here. (All links in this article open in a new window.) Jessica Spotswood did a fantastic post about managing expectations here. (Definitely worth a read if you think the six-figure book deal is the answer to all your prayers.) I just had my third baby. Combined with my amazing stepson, I have four kids. I also have a full time job aside from writing. I don’t watch a lot of television (Though I’ve been watching a lot of Property Brothers while nursing the baby. Hot twins AND home renovations? Sign me up.) and I don’t have much of a social life. This morning I realized that I went to Target yesterday wearing the SAME CLOTHES I HAD WORN TO BED THE NIGHT BEFORE. (Look, a nursing tank and yoga pants are totally day-or-night wear.)

Wait. I lost track of my point. OH.

People ask me all the time why I haven’t quit my day job.

This is a really frustrating question. I’m not shy at all, and I’ll happily tell anyone anything they want to know about anything. But how do you answer in a way that doesn’t make you feel like shit? Because the bottom line is basically, “I can’t afford to.” While I absolutely love my day job (really!), I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’d love the opportunity to be home with my kids. Anyone would. Being asked over and over (and over) again why I still can’t do that just drives home the point that I’m not successful enough (YET!). When you get asked this question enough, especially when you’re basically working two full time jobs, you start to wonder if this is all worth it.

And what’s funny is that you’ll get people wondering why you’re not making enough money, and then on the flip side, you’ll have people who will treat your writing career as a hobby. People ask me all the time if I’m still writing books. Do people walk up to doctors and ask if they’re still dabbling in medicine? I was floored when, in a public venue, in front of fifty people, one person said, “On top of her day job, did you know Brigid is also a published author?” (which made me feel great!) and before I could say anything, someone else brutally mocked that I write paranormal romance for teens. That quickly, just cut off at the knees. I wasn’t there in a writing capacity, so I wasn’t prepared to defend myself. It was years ago, but I’ll never forget how that felt.

At the beginning of the publishing journey, so much is in your control. Get a query rejection? You can send another one. Go through enough queries and decide you want to self-publish? Go for it. But once you’re out there, it’s not just about your story. It’s like poker. You can be a great poker player, but you can’t control the cards, and you can’t control the other players. Luck is part of the game, and sometimes that can be awesome, and sometimes that can be truly terrible. I always say that you have to be a little bit arrogant to succeed in publishing. Not a lot — no one will like you — but a little.

Is it worth it? It’s hard to say. I hope that’s not a downer, because it’s absolute honesty. I recently told my husband that one day my kids are going to be teenagers, and I don’t want to look back at ten years of sleepless nights and weekends spent at Starbucks and wonder why I didn’t give up earlier. At the same time, I’ve invested years of my life already. Why give up now, when things are starting to go really well, and I have such a wonderful legion of readers out there?

Anonymous commenting is always allowed, so I hope some other authors out there will weigh in with their experiences. What do you guys think?

Is it worth it?

If you could go back and do it over again, would you?

24 thoughts on “Being an author is AMAZING! Except when it’s not. Expectations vs. reality for the debut author.

  1. Is it worth it? Heck yeah! I’m not very good at self editing either, but that guy should do it anyway! And yes I would go back and do it over again 😀 Great post Brigid!!

    ~Merceydeis<3
    P.S. How's it going with Michael's book?! So excited!!

  2. EVERYTHING you say here is true. I’ll add a few of my own experiences.

    Once your first book is out people who don’t know how publishing works think the money fairy has landed on your shoulder. The stereotype that published author = rich is deeply ingrained. All the requests for swag, free books, etc. are tied to that expectation.

    So are the sneers and hostility when you have to say no. You’re a writer. You must have endless money.

    It took me a few months to come to terms with some of the harshest reviews. (yes, I do read them, but I never comment on individual reviews) Not reading reviews, good or bad, was near impossible. People tweeted links to me, emailed website links, and in a few cases, pasted the whole review trashing my book into the body of an email.

    The hardest ones to deal with were the ones telling the world–and me–what I was thinking and feeling when I wrote something, and what a horrible person I was for having written it. But I soon realized that those reviews really had nothing to do with the book or the story I’d actually written. Those were all about the reader’s expectations and that I somehow hadn’t met them. They were angry at me because of that.

    I never expected to hit the NYT list with a first book. It’s a good book, I love it and all the characters, but ITS A FIRST BOOK. Other people, however, expected this novel to take off like a rocket. That I’d failed them, disappointed them, came through in every communication and interaction.

    Would I go back and do this all again? Hell yes.

    Every positive interaction with a reader, in person or via email, reinforces for me that chasing my dream of being a real, true published author was worth the work. It’s worth all the exhaustion of chasing a deadline after working a nine hour retail shift, all the lost sleep–everything. Having people read books I’d written has been my dream since I was ten or eleven years old.

    But that’s me. What’s worth it for me might not be worth it for the next woman.

  3. Sometimes I am grateful to be an unpublished writer. I enjoy the freedom of complete control and the safety of keeping my words to myself. Don’t get me wrong, I can’t wait to be published, but in the meantime, I am enjoying the benefits I have.

  4. Brave post, Brigid! (and I could see how nervous you were about writing it!). 🙂 Something I would add, which has really colored my experience of publishing, is that you ultimately have only a *small* amount of control over how successful your books are. Obviously, you control the writing process, but you can write the BEST book you’re capable of and audiences might not connect with it. Some of my books have been very successful (as measured by sales) some have not (again, as measured by sales, not reviews or my experience of writing the book).

    Ultimately, this is pretty frustrating. I am lucky to have another career I’m really passionate about (environmental law). In that career, I am pretty sure if I do my best work, I’ll be successful. I don’t have that assurance with writing. So you have to learn to cut off the tendency to link your ego and feelings of self-worth to your sales. It’s not easy, but it is possible.

    I love writing and don’t plan to stop any time soon. But I’m glad it’s not my full time job anymore. I tried that for a couple of years and the stress of uncertain sales, the always worrying about the next contract, and the insecurity that came with depending on my writing income was too much for me. It was killing the love I had for writing, and always making me think–Is this commercial? Will it sell? How do I capture a bigger market share? How do I move to the next level in sales? *Shudder*

    (Example of self conversation: “Romances with super-alpha military men, police officers, and sexually submissive women are selling like gangbusters. Should I write one of those books? I mean, even though I don’t like reading them, don’t know anything about the military, think a lot of those alpha guys are assholes, and have no interest in police work?”)

    LOL!

    I love writing and being an author more when I can write the books that speak to me without worrying about sales. (Of course, if your natural interests and skills happen to sync with the market, then this isn’t an issue–lucky you!) So for me, not writing full time is actually a better fit. But if i were someone who liked writing about super hot alpha military guys and their submissive partners? Well, that might be a different story. 😉

  5. Honestly, Brigid, sometimes I think you’re living inside my brain. This post is seriously spot on.

    Especially this part that folk rarely bring up in case it looks like they’re trying to s**t on the happy successes of others:

    While we’re talking about social media, it’s both a blessing and a curse. <<YES!

    I love (LOVE!!) being able to communicate with readers and other writers. I have made so many friends on Twitter and Facebook that I’ve lost count. <<This is what keeps me social media sites in the first place.
    At the same time, it can be really, really, REALLY discouraging to go from glee over a five figure advance — and then five minutes later seeing someone post that they got a six figure deal. <<YES!
    Or that they hit the New York Times Bestseller list. <<YES!
    Or that they’re going to be a featured speaker at a conference that you can’t even afford to attend. <<LORDY, YES! (Though, I also live in totally the wrong country for most of those, too, so it'd cost close to $2k in flight costs just to land in the right country–BEFORE paying for anything else)
    Or how about feeling proud that you got the kids to bed and wrote 1,000 words before falling asleep on the laptop, then seeing someone tweet that they wrote 10,000 words today?<< YES, YES, TOTALLY YES! This is me ALL over. And then your saying they should teach you to only concentrate on your own successes is also completely smack on the ball. Because that is one of the hardest parts of being a small-time author trying to reach the next rung(s) on the ladder. It's so very easy to be disheartened. And the more others are making it big or knocking out a new novel every few months, the more pressure it can put on an author to the point they can almost start hating themselves when they don't match what others are achieving. So YES! But, truly, one HAS to keep their eye on their OWN goals, their OWN prizes, WITHOUT comparing themselves to others–because, if they don't, they'll likely drive themselves to insanity or deep depression.

    And again, this:

    Is it worth it? It’s hard to say. I hope that’s not a downer, because it’s absolute honesty. I recently told my husband that one day my kids are going to be teenagers, and I don’t want to look back at ten years of sleepless nights and weekends spent at Starbucks and wonder why I didn’t give up earlier. At the same time, I’ve invested years of my life already. Why give up now, when things are starting to go really well, and I have such a wonderful legion of readers out there?

    I totally relate with this. I'm not agented, as you are, nor are the titles in my series all pre-contracted with my publisher, so I have no pressure to complete each one by a deadline, or to even write on in the series. And many times I have considered giving up, especially when I've had non-writing pressures in my life affecting me also (which I already know you can relate to). But then I'll get a review of one my books that leaves me grinning like a moron, or a kind gesture from one of my readers (a gift arrived in the post for me yesterday that a lovely lady had made herself using the image from one of my books–blew me away), or take the time to write a message letting me know how much they've enjoyed a story or to discuss characters, or even just to say hi. So, yes, readers and their encouragement play a HUGE role in helping me put one foot in front of the other, because it makes me realise this writing milarky I started just as a bit of a hobby is no longer only about myself.

    Great post, btw. Shall share.

    (p.s. ignore any typos. I have a migraine going on)

  6. Thanks for writing this Brigid. It’s all so true.

    Being a published author is the most exciting/depressing thing that’s happened to me, for so many of the reasons you list above. My debut came out last year and I had no idea how wonderful the author community is, but also how hard it is to balance writing + family + DAY JOB + keeping a house that doesn’t look like it’s perpetually ransacked by marauders (especially when other authors seem like they have it SO TOGETHER!).

    I ask myself if it’s worth it all the time. I could just do my day job all the time and not feel like I always have something hanging over my head when I’m done with “the work that pays my bills” at the end of the day. I’m not under contract, but feel that PRESSURE to follow up with another book — and follow up fast. I still love writing, and talking to readers (completely amazing experience when readers are invested in your book!) but I sometimes wonder if my passion for writing has changed post publication. Wondering if it’s just me!

    Thanks for putting all this out there, Brigid! I’m glad you decided to post it.

  7. The guy you mentioned reminds me of another guy in my MFA graduate program…who brings stories to our workshop class so that “we” can tell him what works and what doesn’t. He also admitted to spark noting his way through a literature class.

    They need to stop making this “guy.”

    Thanks for this post–I often wonder if I’ve made the most of my time the last six years. But I can’t not write…so right now I’m just finding the fun where I can.

  8. Worth it yes. But dreams definitely come made not true. With each book, you still go through all the emotions (the highs and the lows.) But still yes, yes, yes. I’m living my dream even if my life isn’t a dream 🙂

  9. I love this post! And I think your last question is a pretty fascinating one. I think it’s worth it, but I don’t know how to exist without it. I don’t feel like myself if I’m not working on a book. I feel guilty for letting down the fictional characters in my head. So I write because if I didn’t, I wouldn’t like myself. That’s not to say that the money doesn’t matter to me. It DOES! (Um, hello roof over my head! I’m quite fond of you!.) I just find it helpful to remind myself that at the end of the day this is what I have to do to be okay with myself.

  10. This is a fantastic post and it echoes all my frustrations perfectly.

    I am a debut author with a digital-first publisher and sometimes it’s the little things that add up. I traded no advance for higher royalties. I also don’t have an agent.

    But the things that get to me are hearing other people talking about going down to their local bookshop and signing a few copies. Or the conference I’m about to attend emailing to confirm they shouldn’t order books for me because it’s ebook-only. Missing the chance to be on a panel at said conference because I have a day job that doesn’t let me plan my life far in advance. The reviewers that won’t accept ebook-only novels.

    And the constant well-meaning question from everyone: “so, are they going to print it?”

    Like you, Brigid, I really don’t want to complain because I’m thrilled to be published – but I had no idea it would be quite this difficult.

  11. Brigid, this post was so brave and amazing. I’m not published yet, but I know that if I ever am, I won’t be going into it with idealized expectations.

    Success doesn’t mean money, either. Well, it does, but it also doesn’t. It’s not the only measure, you know? True success, to me, is doing a good job being the best you can. I’ve been following you since before your first book came out thanks to Sarah J. Maas announcing your publishing deal on her blog. I’ve adored your books. I recommend and share them. I’m highly anticipating the finale. Your books are on my fantasy shelf (And I don’t have enough space for all my books, so many are hidden away in the cubby. Only the best get shelf space.) To me, you are a success because I love you. And I know other people do, too.

    Thank you for writing this reality check post. I wish so many stereotypes didn’t exist and that people didn’t expect so many ridiculous things. The gall of some of those emails you got…SMH.

    *hugs and loves*

  12. Great, great post Brigid! I missed meeting you at YAFest 🙁 So many of your points are spot on. I get asked all the time how many books I sold, why I am still working a full time job, how much money I get, and other things people would rarely ask of other professions. I read reviews that sometimes hurt. But I love the whole writing and reading world and wouldn’t give it up for anything. Reading a comment or email or review from someone who loved my story and understood my points is such a joy in my life.
    But it is so very true that people do not understand or know what goes into getting a book published as another thing so many people say to me is “Oh, when my kids are grown/when I find the time/next summer, I’m going to write a book and retire.” And I say, “Sounds like a great plan!”

  13. Brigid, I love your writing. Your Elemental series is so wonderfully written and creative — I frequently recommend it to my book-loving friends. I’m so glad that you make room in your crazy schedule to rear your extra children — I mean stories. I sincerely appreciate it. I hope you continue to do so for a long time.

  14. It’s worth it for me because I have to write and love the process. I also never dared to dream I would be successful enough with my writing to quit my day job, so I put less pressure on myself. I would love it if I could reach a larger audience, but it will either come or it won’t.

  15. First, I totally agree with you about Property Brothers. It’s like any time I turn on HGTV lately, hot men are fixing and building things! How mesmerizing is that? 😉
    But on to important stuff…
    My first novel has been out two months, so I definitely fall into the debut author category. It’s been an interesting two months–I’ve already endured some of the trials you’ve mentioned–snarky comments about writing paranormal romance, the ups and downs of reviews, and $72 worth of charges last week at the post office.
    For me, the biggest surprise is that there’s no down time. In this business, you don’t get a break to catch your breath. When you finish writing the book, there are revisions and copy edits and promo work and blog tours and then, oh yeah, time to write that next book! (Like Brigid, I don’t mean to sound ungrateful–just stating facts.) There are days, as Elisa mentioned, when I wonder what it would be like to just work my regular job and hang out with my family without all the extra work hanging over my head.
    That said, I still wouldn’t change anything. Being a writer is totally worth it.
    I’ve spent the past few weeks on revisions. (I’m the opposite of the guy in your story–I’ll edit and edit and edit until someone rips the MS out of my hands.) Revising my story helped me remember why I started writing in the first place: because it’s FUN. It took me a while, but once I turned off the outside noise and slid back into my story world, I stopped worrying about what readers would think or buy and just got back into my groove of doing what was fun. So maybe for me, it’s all about the joy of The Process? I hope that makes sense. 🙂
    Thanks to Brigid for writing this post. When I’m stressed, it also helps to remember I’m not alone!

  16. Obviously coming from a very different place on this one, but brilliantly said, Brigid! It never ceases to amaze me how you juggle two seriously BIG jobs with being an amazing mom, wife, friend, and everything else you do. I think that, in a day and age where authors are so ACCESSIBLE to readers, bloggers–any interested party, really–it’s easy to take them for granted. And, as a reader–even one who’s been lucky enough to be involved with authors, books, and publishers on a slightly more intimate level than the ‘average’ reader (as if there is such a thing)!–there’s still that element of ‘you’re an author. An author! Your name is on a BOOK! You’re FAMOUS!’ And the idea that fame=wealth/privilege/RICHES!, while a silly one, still exists. It’s nice to read such a humble, eloquent reminder of the reality of what you (and your colleagues!) do every day. As a reader, perhaps not so much, but as a blogger, I think we take a little too much for granted at times.

  17. Thanks so much for this post, Brigid. This is the kind of post people seriously considering writing as a career need to read. And I’d just like to say if you did quit it would be a great tragedy because you are a great writer, I’ve only read Storm so far but I loved it. The world needs your stories!!!

  18. Pingback: Writing Tip Wednesday: Expectations vs. reality for the debut author. | Inside My Worlds: R.L.Sharpe

  19. I love this post and that you were willing to put yourself out there and be honest. It seems that there are so many great things about being a published author, and so many people wanting to get there, that it’s easy to forget all the STRESS that comes along with it. I’m totally in awe of how hard you work! I’m also glad that you decided to go on the crazy publishing journey, and I hope you’ll keep at it, because I absolutely love your books. =)

  20. Totally watching Income Property right now.

    I love that there are authors like you willing to share what it’s really like so I go into the whole thing knowing what reality is. To me it’s worth it because I love the Merrick boys, but I get this – even just the bits of the writing world I see on twitter are such a dose of reality. I see the stress, and I see how people are abused on social media, and the piracy. I see how books that aren’t that good make the NYT list and good books sort of flounder b/c no one loves them.

    Thank you!

  21. Brigid, this is a pretty profound post. And I’m replying from the middle of all of that right now – my second book is released as of today, and I’m editing book 3, and planning book 4, and writing blog tour posts, and applying for writing grants, and doing heaps of promotion, and prepping for speaking events, AS WELL AS working my normal job, and raising four kids, and trying to keep the house under some kind of order. I seem to spend a lot of my time now living with a vague sense of panic. It’s so hard, keeping all the plates spinning. I often feel like I’m making it all up as I go along (appropriate, I guess), and I wonder whether I really knew what I was doing, when I signed on the dotted line – it’s like Extreme Multi-tasking, if that was an Olympic sport (maybe it should be!). I had NO IDEA how much additional work was involved in being a writer. I just thought the manuscript was it!! Crazy 🙂
    I couldn’t do this if I wasn’t supported – by my husband (who is my rock), by my family and friends, by my editors, and the people who tell me they’re loving what I’ve published. And when I read your words – telling it like it is – I wanted to cheer. We are all flying by the seat of our pants. Is this what the writer’s life has always been like? Was Dickens like this? Probably!
    So thanks for writing this post, it made me feel like I’m not going crazy – this is actually normal, it’s what writers do, have always done, and I’m not alone in feeling like I am constantly inventing a new normal for myself every day!
    And please keep writing! I love your books, and I always hang out for the next one and the next – you have loads of faithful readers here in Australia! Good luck with everything, hugs to you, and hope your writing buzz keeps flowing. xx

  22. I can’t wait for michaels book!! And I honestly with all my heart hope that you don’t stop there. I’m 20 years old and that book relates to so many things that I’ve been through or am yet to go through. Aside from the fact there’s a bit of supernatural mixed in there everything else applies to everyday life! Anyone who doesn’t give constructive criticism or downright praises is just tooting their own horn. Thank you for bringing these wonderful characters into my life. And the soundtrack for each of them is on my computer as we speak. I couldn’t help it!

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