There is so much I want to say about this past year, I could probably write it into a novel. Who am I kidding, I could likely write it into eight. 2014 has truly been a learning experience for me, also a year where I have grown both personally and professionally. I have learned a lot in the publishing world, some of which has scared me, most of it though has changed me forever in a positive way.
I never thought I would be here to begin with. Believing you are worthy enough for something takes time, something that I am still adjusting to. Of course I think confidence comes with the journey along with each passing experience, whatever the case I am starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin and I am thankful for this past year because I think it helped me along the way.
A lot has happened to me... I went from a no one to being signed with a small publishing house, only to understand further that nothing is what it seems. Thankfully I was able to go back to having total control over my work and back to the Indie world that I was so terrified of to begin with. In the midst of my transition from traditional to Indie, I got the rights back to my work and re-published all five of my available books. One was banned soon after. That added more whirl to the wind, but I am grateful for it. Amazon eventually put it back up on their platform.
All along the way, I have met some of the most incredible people! There are others that have stood by me through the thick of it all, and I wouldn't be here without them. I need to make sure that I let them know just how special they are to me.
First, I was thrown into the city that stole my heart. I remember e-mailing Bluestockings Bookstore in SoHo last September, beyond terrified. I mean, what in the hell would they want with some southern Indiana girl from nowhere, USA?! But they got back to me after reviewing my book and agreed to a solo event in January. I will forever remember that moment for the rest of my life. I had to remind myself to breathe. I'm grinning now just thinking back to that second, how my heart felt. That event was one that will be instilled in my soul for eternity. It was small, but extraordinary. I even did a live erotic reading before an audience and caught up with some great people in the city. I had the chance to share it with my best friend and cousin, Ashley. We laughed so much during that trip!
I took that picture before our first night out on the "town" lol. We loved Bleecker Street and all the amazing pubs they had. I never felt more inspired and accepted than I did within that city and I am lucky to be able to go back March 21, 2015 for the Halos and Horns Book Signing!
All while working full-time, being a mother and wife, and juggling life, I stay up late and write. It is what keeps me sane all while I lack sleep. Perhaps a total conundrum, but the absolute truth. I would be lost without my stories, my truths and tales, fears and loves from my characters. It is what keeps me on an even keel. I am a compulsive writer. Some see it as a blessing. Perchance they are right, sometimes it is, other times not so much, more like a curse. I don't believe those people that say you can't produce good work if you write quickly. Every person is different and I would never judge that. I just know when I have something to tell, I can't stop until I am done. I do at least eight read-throughs and have an incredible editing team (not to mention my inner editing self!). I believe that even though I produce work quickly, they are worthy tales. It has taken me a long time to see that, but I do.
I am good enough and my stories are beautifully fucked up fairy-tales. I am ready to stop being the wallflower and let my sparkle shine.
I've decided to stop playing it safe. Putting myself out there is part of that. I attended a few signings in 2014 and they were all fantastic. It was at the Rogers Mash-Up where I met Kelsey Keeton with KKeeton Designs. I instantly clicked with her and appreciated her vision in the photographs she took. The story of how I found my models is awesome and I couldn't be happier to have found them. They are humble, professional, fabulous people and I consider myself lucky to work with them! Eric and Rachel depicted Lyla and Everett perfectly!
Another signing I met some more awesome people. Miss Kennedy Kelly is a true gem. I can't wait to hang with her in Austin, TX at the Deep in the Heart Author Event Feb 7, 2015
These ladies are my heart and soul, my rocks, my sanity through everything this year. We are there for one another outside of the book world as well. They are the first to read my work and the last, the ones that are my front-line warriors, my encouragers, my best friends. Cecily, Tara, Kelly... I love you girls more than you will ever know. I've said this before and I will say it again, you all make me feel like a tarnished old penny that was once unlucky and found, turned into a worthy charm. There are not enough words for me to tell you how much I am humbled and grateful for you girls. Another shout out and thank you to Jenna Schmitt... you are amazing and I look forward to our fruit Fridays again!
Finally, while mentioning several times that I have found the courage to be good enough, I have so much to look forward to in 2015. I will be wrapping up The Scars and Sorrow Saga and releasing 2 dark books (at least). Gwendolyn vs. the Band of Barren Hearts (Monster #1) and The Absolution of Abrahm Masterson (standalone), coming spring 2015. I am elated to delve into this genre a little deeper than Lyla's story. It has been enlightening, fun, scary, and so much more. It has been interesting and entertaining to take my betas on the wild, dark ride as well!!!!
Finally, I want to thank my street team, Mary's Magnificent Minxes for being my backbone as well. I love you ladies hard! Until next time, live for today because tomorrow is never promised. And as our beloved Lyla would say...
Carpe fucking Diem,