I get this way every time a book is about to come out. Well, one of my books. I have trouble sleeping. I think about stupid things like: Will the book sell? Will people love the characters as much as I do? Will they get into the story? The truth is, I can’t control any of that.
Of course I want the book to do well. Who wouldn’t? It’s my first time out with a new publisher and I want to impress. I’ve done my bit. Worked on promo, although it never quite feels like enough, and I’m tweeting, updating facebook and blogging all over the place.
You may hear stories of writers who don’t worry about their books coming out, but I have a feeling they are lying. I’m the last person to judge, but I don’t know how you can be successful in this business and not worry about it. Before you’re published you think that all that matters is selling the book to the publisher, but there is so much more.
But the writing really is the only thing we can control. When I feel like jumping on Ozzie’s Crazy Train, I ask myself two questions. Did you write a book you enjoy? Do you love the book? The answer is always yes. I can’t turn something in that I don’t believe in. I’ve created characters I want to spend more time with and that’s always a good sign. And I wrote a spy story that I’ve always wanted to write.
I’m happy with the book. I just want it to sell really well so I can do more. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.
But back to that train. The best way to stay off it is to constantly move forward. I’m already two books ahead of the one that is coming out. And I’m contracted to write three more Blazes. So when the scary stuff bothers me, I think about the future.
Yes, you say, but what if you don’t have a new contract yet? You keep writing. I’ve been there too. Sometimes with Berkley I went close to a year between contracts. I just kept writing.
I was talking to a friend the other day who was upset about someone, who is at the same level as her in the publishing world, getting a huge world tour. That person also had special placement in stores and all kinds of advertising. My friends argument, was why not me? I get it. But we can’t control that stuff. It’s a combo of a pushy editor/publisher and a marketing department that thinks they can make big bucks, and sheer dumb luck most of the time.
So, when you ask what I’m doing these days. I’ll tell you trying to finish the first draft on a YA and then I’m jumping headfirst into the next Blaze, which I’m super excited about. Oh, and I’ll be doing book signings (Feb. 6, Hurst Texas, B&N, 2 p.m., you better be there) and blogging about TAKE ME IF YOU DARE. But most of the time I’ll be writing, because that is really all that matters.
What makes you crazy and how to you get through it? Tell me, I really want to know.