These last few months have been quite emotional. I am finally that close to publishing the novel, and balancing this with everything else going on around me, has been hard. If things go well I will have my novel Unexpected Obsession uploaded this weekend, or at the latest sometime next week. It was supposed to be late September but some unexpected (the irony of this word) things like health issues, cover issues, workshop and editing commitments, and life in general decided it wasn’t to be, and all my plans for the completion, and then release of my book took a downward slide.
I think of life as an elevator, or a lift. It goes up; it comes down. All it takes is the press of a button. Sometimes the trip seems to take forever and we get exhausted in the process. So, why re-press that button, and re-take the risk? I wanted a different direction in my life, and I wanted to prove it could be done. Not just for my sake, but for anybody out there afraid to follow, their dreams. Writing is my dream.
My novel Unexpected Obsession, Book 1 in The Unexpected Series is ready to go. It really is only a few more sleeps. However, the events of the last few months have meant all marketing plans have fallen behind. I could, wait a bit longer to release the book. I don’t want to. I am tired of feeling like that passenger stuck half-way between floors. Fear takes over when you stop moving. Action makes action as I discovered only too well last weekend. You see, I had the pleasure of meeting two of Australia’s best romance writers, Barbara Hannay and Rachel Bailey. The Romance Writers of North Queensland organized a Romantic High Tea at Tumbertin Tea Rooms, a Townsville treasure. I nearly didn’t go as I am still not a hundred percent, and energy levels are very low. Getting even a little dressed up, was too hard.
I gave myself a real talking to. Thank Goodness, I listened, because it was a lovely day. Both authors were warm, encouraging, and so willing to share of themselves that I simply didn’t care how I felt. An elevator mimics life with its high moments and its lows. It is a powerful demonstration of reality. When we step on board we have to trust we get to the end. Sometimes we don’t and have to take the stairs. It is horrendously tiring but still allows us to get to our destination. For me, pulling myself up was an affirmation. Finishing what I have spent my whole life wanting to do, can actually happen. Yes, I hate the stairs but they were necessary to get part of the way. Reality is not a smooth ride, but it can be wonderful.
The week got better. My friend and co-author, Alyson Walton (Stories of the Dark and Light) presented me with the most beautiful mask to add to my collection. It made my dreams seem more plausible. Masks are my theme on my website. Each mask tells a different story, and this particular mask told me, more was to come and it did. It arrived in the shape of small tokens of affection from two of my dearest friends. All this was totally unexpected (that word again). Someone pressed the elevator button for me, and got it moving. People are willing to do that. My journey became super smooth. I hardly felt a breath of movement. I was too busy being happy about the wonderful support of family and friends. How then, can I not follow my dreams?
Strangely enough, everything else also fell into place. I now have a cover and I love it. I am hoping you will too. There is also an article in the local paper, The Townsville Bulletin (weekend edition), where I have a very small write up. Actually the fact that I am there at all with people like Barbara Hannay is humbling, and a surprise, courtesy of the hard working Romance Group, who are part of The Townsville Writers and Publishers Centre. They help bring the world to us when we can’t go to the world.
A positive attitude goes a long way. Nina Amir offered some sage advice in a recent article. We need to remain masters of our thoughts, and alter the course of negative thoughts back to positive and affirming ones. Nina says we can choose who we want to be every day. Only we can decide between productive or unproductive, and we can’t do that if we don’t show up every day with the desire, to be effective. I let outside factors undermine my confidence. None of us can afford that. Confidence must be guarded zealously, at all times.
I have some catching up to do with marketing. Luckily I have a lot in place and if I can manage the upload in the next week, I can then adjust things enough to get the word out there. I am most anxious about your opinion. Good or bad, I am looking forward to it, and have been hard at work deciding what needs to be done, in order to make things easier for readers.
Firstly, rather than have a newsletter I will be providing an Updates section both at the end of each blog post, and on my Home page at www.brstrickland.com. Secondly, I am hoping to tweak that website to make it easier for my audience. (Sean, with your help, please.) Time-management is improving but my budget remains non-existent and limits some of the things, I can do. However I am a work in progress and with your help can get better and better so back to work for me. Come find me because any journey that is shared is so much better.
Unexpected Obsession Book 1 in The Unexpected Series will be released this week. Stay tuned for the exact date and other relevant details including a sneak look at the cover.
Ciao for now,