Hundreds of ‘Tweets’
Numerous, numerous mistakes.
Immeasurable New Friendships.
Copious amounts of trios written. (If you haven’t noticed my trios, don’t ask)
Incalculable times hitting the refresh button on Amazon dashboard reports. (hey, I know you authors did/do this too)
12,000 VP Pit Crew Members
Limitless love for this incredible community.
Four Amazon Genre Best Sellers
Two USA Today Best Sellers
One NYT Best Seller
One Complete Trilogy.
One Banned Novella (you knew I was going to throw that in there somewhere didn’t you?)
One incredibly fulfilling and overwhelmingly humbling ride of a lifetime…
It’s been one year since I sat here with bated breath and pushed publish.
One year since I worried and wondered and hoped that someone – anyone – would buy this book with a blurb that took me weeks to write. A blurb I even hired a ‘blurb doctor’ to try and help me pen (yes, there are such people)…but after a week of trying I was told there was no help for it. (ßsee, I told you, I made mistakes – I didn’t trust in myself). This book that only my mother had read and only two other people even knew I had written. So under a veil of relative anonymity in case it tanked, I published Driven…my emotive, steamy read about a damaged alpha and a heartbroken heroine.
This bookkeeper, wife, and mom of three decided to throw caution to the wind rather than double check that her seatbelt was fastened. I’d never planned on writing a book, let alone three of them. I just wanted to challenge myself and see if I could do it, fulfill that lifelong dream when all I’d been for so long was so-and-so’s Mom or so-and-so’s wife. I wanted to push publish to say that I did it was secretly hoping maybe a hundred people would buy it.
It has been one year since I picked a date – a random date. A Tuesday to be specific because I wanted to feel like a ‘real’ author, and that’s the day of the week real author’s released their books. And in a fitting and rather ironic twist, even though I pushed publish for Tuesday the 14th of May, Driven went live a day earlier than anticipated. It went live on Monday the 13th. For those of you who know me or have read the trilogy, you know this is my favorite lucky, unlucky number.
It has been one year since I embarked on this leap before you look journey where not only did people start to buy this book with the checkered flag cover, but I discovered the incredibly good hearted nature of the community around me. Selfless bloggers in it for the love of a good book, enthusiastic readers wanting to help others hear about this story they really liked and this guy named Colton. Incredible authors who have answered questions from this newbie when they could have just ignored me under the guise of my question got lost in their pile of emails. Unexpected friendships that I never anticipated but that have surrounded me with incredible love and security in this fickle industry.
In this year, I have learned so much about myself. Book sales aside, this journey that was supposed to be a hobby now turned career, has been the biggest experience of all because of what it has done to me as a person. These books – the ability to pour my heart and soul out into words in a story – have allowed me to find myself when I never even knew I was lost. They have allowed me to come into my own and have the confidence to stand behind my work with unwavering conviction. They have taught me that as long as you work hard, treat people with respect and fairly, and give it your all, you can be proud of something even when someone else doesn’t like it. It has taught me that self-confidence is the biggest present you can ever give yourself. And most importantly, it reaffirmed to never give up on your dreams…sometimes you just might accomplish them when you least expect it.
In this year I have learned that there are abuse victims wanting to heal, wanting to leave the 747 behind and use Colton’s story, his superheroes or a combination of the two to take that first step. Now that? That blows me away and makes me proud all at the same time.
In this year I have also learned that husbands REALLY like when their wives read these kinds of books. They like it so much, they write authors like me and ask for more books, more sex, and maybe a few pointers here and there on what scenes they should re-create for their spouses. Since Ferarris are not the norm, cotton candy is an easy favorite for me.
This year has been incredible, but has also been tough, I’m not going to lie. Not because of the sleepless nights or the continuous lack of hours in the day to accomplish things…but because I put my name out there. I unknowingly invited unwarranted attacks on everything that I hold dear to me. I chose to use my real name – not a pen – because I wanted to be proud of what I did…proud of what I wrote…little could I predict the actions of others because of it. I rarely speak of this and the only reason I bring this up, is to express how that one moment in time defined how proud I was to be a part of this community. I cannot speak about this incredible year without touching in general terms on the personally distressing and overwhelming events that occurred around Crashed’s release. There is an often unsteady balance in ‘book world’ of authors and bloggers – rumors, bullshit, what have you – but I have to tell you, when all of that is pushed aside and the two of them unite together and the incredible readers are added in? There is no other community in the world I am prouder to belong to and be a part of. So for that incredible, unwavering support…thank you…it still chokes me up when I think about it. I will readily admit, it was probably the hardest thing I have ever faced…to be attacked publicly…to hold my tongue and not defend the mistruths being said or address the posts/blogs/my friends being attacked simply because of their association with me…but I learned the most valuable lesson of these 365 days…Always carry your head held high and have grace in adversity because at the end of the day, respecting yourself and having dignity is ten times more important and can never be taken away from you.
This year has been incredible… a ride of a lifetime…and I owe it all to you guys…to the readers and bloggers, some of them having been here since day one. So thank you so very much…for challenging me and accepting me and welcoming me into your crazy world…for loving the voices in my head and urging me to #writeKristywrite…I am one lucky author…one who will never forget everything that you guys have given me in these 365 days…every single lesson, every self discovery, every kind word.
As a good friend said to me tonight, ‘Happy Bookaversary’ … I laughed and said, I loved the term…but you know what? My bookaversary wouldn’t be complete if you weren’t sharing it with me … because you are just as much a part of it as I am…
Thank you so very much,
Ps. Damn that was wordy… lol