So here's a little update on me: I am free from the shackles of deadlines for the remainder of 2014!
When I first got published two years ago, I had no idea the romance writing community was going to boom as much as it has. New authors are emerging every day and with the prevalence of self-publishing, new books are releasing by the minute. It's so easy to judge your own career by the careers around you. It took me years to get The Low Notes ready for publication, mostly because I didn't have the confidence that it would sell and because I was working hard at my other job and rarely made the time for it. Same with Reckless Radiance. Those books were finished long before they ever came out.
Then I got the idea for Natural Harmony and the words fell out of me so swiftly I was amazed at how fast I could write when I was inspired and motivated by the fact that writing was now my career! Natural Harmony took only a few months to write. Sway took even less time. So I went from one book a year, to two, and this year I'll be releasing three!
Last Resort and Best Laid Plans are essentially one long book broken into two volumes but when Best Laid Plans releases in September it will be my 3rd release of 2014. I'm currently finishing up final edits on both.
It seems insane that I was able to do so much in such a short period of time, but when I see how steadily some of my peers release novels I often feel like I'm the slow-poke. I put a lot of pressure on myself this year to keep up with some imaginary average I got in my head of how many books I needed to have coming out.
Now, let me clarify that I don't feel like I sacrificed the quality of my work to achieve my goal of 3 releases this year. In fact, I'm so incredibly proud of Sway and Last Resort/Best Laid Plans and what I was able to accomplish in both books. I truly feel as though they are my best works to date.
The bottom line is, I need to go easier on myself. I still work between 35 and 40 hours a week in my salon (that I run, which means I then come home and do more work like ordering supplies and bookkeeping, etc). The time I was dedicating to writing this year was leaving me run a little ragged. Especially considering the amount of events I took on this year as well.
I can no longer base my path on the paths of others. Honestly, I don't want anyone's career but mine so looking at what others have done doesn't really apply to me anyway. I've gotta be me...and I think I'm kinda cool.
After September I'll be in full organization mode for Indie Unmasked (the Indianapolis author event I'm co-planning for November 15th), preparing for the holidays, entering the busiest time in my salon business and trying to focus more attention on promotion for my existing novels.
That being said, for the rest of 2014 I'm going to be a writing fool!
But I'm not going to be writing up to a deadline. I'm not going to be giving release dates for anything upcoming. And I'm not going to pressure myself to focus all of my attention on one WIP, sacrificing the strength of others.
I'm going to write as I please, in whatever WIP that calls to me. I have so many things in the works and the only goal I have is that one or two of them get finished by the end of the year so that early 2015 I'm all ready to go with some finished books!
Here's a little glimpse at some of the projects I have (you know, just to tease you since you have no idea which of these will get done and which ones may not be out until 2016! haha!)
Painted : a Confession Records novella -- this is Vanessa's story! It will be a novella filling in the gaps of her story during the same time as Sway.
Exposure : a Confession Records novella -- Beau's client Declan Aaron and Beau's former flame, photographer Leslie Teirnan, meet and simultaneously butt heads and create sparks. A sexy, fun, short about two characters who just couldn't keep from growing in my mind.
Untitled New Adult Novel : I would call this a NA romance but I'm not sure it completely applies. It's the story of a girl who loves her best friend's boyfriend but her best friend is not who she appears to be. If I had to ultimately describe it, it is one girl's journey wading through her overwhelming emotions of guilt, grief and true love. It's back to Wexley Falls with this one but no major overlapping characters from The Low Notes will appear. But Wexley Falls is where forbidden love blooms.
Untitled New Adult m/m Romance : Speaking of The Low Notes, do we miss James Dalton? I do! It's time I get back to writing James's story. He is such a loved character from my first novel, I want to give him the love story he deserves.
There are plenty more (including 2 more erotic romances for all you people who can't wait to get your hands on Last Resort) but if I listed all my ideas I fear I might have an angry mob banging on my door.
Thank you for all of your support over these last two years. I hope that all you voracious readers can understand my need to breathe. In the meantime, I have 4 novels for you and a two-part series on its way. August 26th Last Resort will arrive.