It’s been 30 months since I pushed publish on Driven. 30 months of learning something new every single day. And I’m asked all the time what those things are, so I thought I’d share the top 20 things I’ve learned. Here goes…
1. Words are powerful. They can hurt. They can heal. They can allow you to become whole again. They are open for interpretation and no two people will read them the same way.
2. I will never be able to please everybody with every story. No author will. We know it. And yet we will always try to. Strive for it. Fail at it. The endless cycle.
3. For every reader who wants each open ended thought/hint/notion in a story tied up into a pretty little bow, there are just as many who want it left open to interpretation so they can use their own imagination. See Item #2.
4. Quality. Quality is ten times more important than quantity. I could pump a book out every few months but the story wouldn’t be as detailed, as in depth, as touching. I prefer quality. Always.
5. I’ll never be able to write fast enough. See item #4
6. People are much braver behind the console of their computer than when they are face to face. #Truth
7. I’ll always be nervous on release day. ALWAYS. It never gets easier.
8. Romance readers are the #1 most underrated readership in the world. We are huge. We are mighty. And yet we are still discredited because we like to read damn good love stories. #HopelessRomanticsUnite
9. Authors are quirky. I’ve met many. I’ve befriended a lot. There are a few I don’t care for. The other 99.8% are the most incredible, supportive, positive, and creative people I know. For all the drama you see online, there is so much support behind the scenes. And paranoia. Are we good enough? Creative enough? And the list goes on…
10. Sometimes you have to take risks. Sometimes you have to spread your wings and try something different or your creativity will fall stagnant. I’m okay with that. I welcome the challenge. I want nothing more than to wow you with something different every now and then.
11. Readers are incredible. They are loyal. They are passionate. They are all unique in their own ways. They are picky – know what they like and don’t like. They are voracious for more. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
12. This industry is constantly changing. Just when you think you have it figured out, something comes along and knocks it on its ass so that you have to figure it out all over again.
13. There will never be enough Colton and Rylee. (See, I do listen to you guys ☺ )
14. Advertising is a necessary evil. It doesn’t work like it used to. There are so many authors and so many ads for their books that yours is just one among a fish in the same school. We know this. And yet we still need the visibility.
15. Readers don’t realize how important it is to an author when they recommend a book through either word of mouth and/or with a review. Authors realize it. Appreciate it. Are grateful for it. Especially this author. So thank you. Thank you ‘x’ infinity.
16. Every day is different for an author. Yes, it might look the same – with our ass in a chair in front of our computer and a Diet Coke beside it 😉 – but it’s always different. A different world, a new scene, a hot fight, and even hotter sex scene. It doesn’t matter. It’s always different. It’s always challenging. It’s always rewarding when we can get our thoughts to paper and form them into words.
17. The more you write, the better you become. I guess when my mom used to tell me practice makes perfect she was right.
18. Writing is damn hard work. It’s fun, exhausting, exhilarating, fulfilling, stressful, overwhelming, emotional, and special. It’s blood, sweat, tears, some missed dinners, a lot of lost sleep, and some absence during family time…BUT I wouldn’t want to do anything else because it is just that incredible.
19. Procrastination is always certain. Discipline is required. If not, I’d always be on social media and not writing.
20. Covers. For every person who loves your cover there will someone who doesn’t. Do the best you can in creating them. Taste is subjective. Criticism is a given. Take it with a grain of salt.
And I have to add one more… 🙂
21. My readers rock. I know it and will never forget it.
I could keep going… you know how wordy I am… but my writing schedule beckons (see item #19) … So for those who have asked me over the past few months to impart on them the things I have learned… there are my top 21.
Have a great week!