A week after the big event and I still can’t quite grasp it. I can call myself an author. That might sound strange considering I have been blogging for a year but somehow the publishing of a book is so different. Blogging has continuity; you can change your mind and rescind whatever you wrote or you can add to it, explain it and all in the next post. A book is final. It is a completed work. Yes, it is possible to go back and correct small errors but basically once created there is no going back. It is very exposing.
Stories of the Dark and Light, a project I have been working on for almost a year with my writing group Wordwick3d is now up on Amazon and Smash Words and it has my name on it, all our names on it, and it brings a feeling of pride mixed with a good dose of trepidation tempered by a delicious sense of satisfaction. We did what we set out to do. We published. We let go of our fears. The thought that people might not like our stories is no small thing. We accepted it and ploughed ahead. Thirdly and the best reason of all for feeling happy with ourselves is that we did it together as a team. Together we are a mixture of personalities and yet we put everything aside (did I mention strong personalities with a tendency to theatrics) to work together.
How can we not be proud of reaching this point? From here we can travel our own road with more confidence. Banding together was not something I had ever intentionally considered but on my own my work sat and waited for the right moment that never seemed to arrive. I have no doubt it would have come but working with a group that held the same desires and fears propelled a faster delivery date. Together we have prodded and produced.
Meeting up on a regular basis as a group, has encouraged activity. For me, someone that has struggled in the town I live in (I miss home) the project has pushed me back into the land of the living you could say. It piqued my memory and I found myself recalling my passion for the teachings of Dale Carnegie. It brought to mind one of his sayings which I think has been sitting reclusively in the background of my memory waiting for something to spark it into existence. One of Dale’s more famous quotes is the one where he says “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” So I did. We all did. And Dale is right. We got busy on this and it has improved our own individual work.
When I started blogging it was with the idea of building an audience towards this day, the day the title, author, becomes legitimate. Surprisingly I find myself quite calm about everything. I am not jumping around yelling, buy me, buy me, in fact if anything I am very low key and am probably a marketer’s nightmare. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I have told friends and relatives and have spread the word and do have a plan in place but all of that is taking a back seat to emotions that surprised me. They are about so much more than finally publishing our collection. They are centred on the fact that we are following a dream.
Whenever people go out on a limb to follow their dreams they demonstrate that age, and circumstances don’t rule our outcomes. There are ways to make things happen. We just have to be willing and open and then it seems we become a magnetic to others with the same idea. Everyone seems to be waiting for that one item to inspire in them the courage to get busy. For me it has been the many authors over the years that have given my soul sanctuary every time I engaged with their words. Sanctuary is just another word for survival; we just find it in different places.
There was moment last week when the computer went quiet and blank as if it needed to rest before rising to the grand occasion it had been invited to. We waited, silent, barely breathing until light flashed and suddenly, magically there was this vision on the screen, our vision and we jumped and gave a joint gasp of absolute wonder and delight. There it was, our creation ready to journey to you, and it is all about you out there, the readers of the world. This is our way of giving, of making a difference even if it is a few moments entertainment. I am not saying we succeeded. I am saying that at least we tried. We took a journey that had hazards and we navigated, and survived.
I read an interesting comment by Richard Branson that I think sums up what I am mean. He was asked the following by Mark Ernst: “If you had another 65 years of life, what would you want to achieve?” This is a question to a man we all know has achieved a great deal already. Your mind jumps to the infinite possibilities he might come up with. His answer instead was simple and humble. I quote:
“Despite everything, my destination has always remained the same. My goal, no matter what I have done, has been to make a difference in people’s lives.”
Now comes the hard part, the finding out how well we did it and that is entirely up to you out there, and whether you decide to be or not to be our readers. We have something for everyone that likes their stories slightly dark and we are willing to have your input.
Ciao till next time