Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Big Sigh Of Relief!

Currently Reading:  Print:  I'm almost finished with Desperation Point.  The majority of this book takes place in the Arctic, and as one who hates cold, I can't fathom being forced to spend days on a glacier and dodging bullets as well as the elements.  So yeah, I have to read this one in spurts, since the description makes me want to huddle in front of a roaring fire!  And like the other two Dan Brown books I've read, when do these characters get a chance to use the rest room?  Or even eat?

E-book:  Loved Liz Crowe's Sweat Equity, even though I'd forgotten some of the story line of Floor Time.  Recommended Read:)  And now I'm on Closing Costs....and yelling at the characters to 'get over themselves' and 'act adult'.  This is a wonderful, soap opera-kind of series where characters get together, break up, realize they're still in love, get back together, fight, make up, move on, etc.  But now in CC, a Life Changing Moment is happening.  I won't give it away, but it's time for the characters to grow up and act like adults, instead of being stuck in adolescence.  Liz has lots of fans, so if you'd like to try a not-your-typical-HEA, then pick up these books:)

It's no secret I suffer from self-doubt.  Even though I've been doing the publishing thing now for ten years, I've only been doing it with REAL publishing companies for four.  And so when a publishing deadline looms, then passes by without any word from my editor, the following dialogue ran through my head.

"Maybe they aren't going to publish it.  You had to defend your main character three times during the last round of edits; maybe she turned it over to the head editor because you're too hard to work with."

"Maybe the head editor and publisher are trying to find a kind way to tell you this book sucks, and they're pulling your contract."

"Maybe you should give up and work on something else.  You have how many other wips begging to be written?"

And on and on it went.  I was afraid to send out an email, in case my fears were confirmed by a reply, giving a voice to one of the above.  I did a lot of reading; I tried to calm down-after all, I have had people say they enjoy my books-and concentrate on family stuff.  But in the back of my mind, there was always this doubt.

And the weather didn't help.  It snowed.  The day the spouse and I were to enjoy a day to ourselves up in Indianapolis, the youngling's school was cancelled, and we ended up taking him with us.  Thankfully, he behaved himself, and the three of us had a good time.  But I was angry, depressed, and tried not to show it too much.  I was mad at circumstances beyond my control.

And getting online didn't help, for many of my friends were touting their new releases.  I was supportive, but slightly irritated when a submissions editor treated me like a newbie.  Calm down; she has how many submissions per day?  Breathe....

Over the weekend, I indulged myself and stayed in my pj's until 5pm, watching my DVR'd shows.  And on Sunday, when we had to move the clocks forward, it was as if my attitude shifted also.  Plus the familar story of the Prodigal Son at church bolstered my spirits.  I sent up a prayer that whatever happened was in His Hands, and I would accept it.

I decided before going to bed that night to check my email 'one more time'.  And there, lo and behold, was my Proof Copy.  I opened it up, and there at the top was a comment:  "Very Well Written Story'   I was so happy, and so relieved, I almost cried.  I desperately needed that affirmation, and it was as if a huge weight had lifted from my shoulders.

Despite my issues with getting up an hour earlier than my body clock claims, I had a pretty good day yesterday, making minor changes to my MS, emailing back and forth to my editor, and even have a new release date of this Friday, March 15th.  Which means tomorrow I'll post the Scavenger Hunt.  Instead of having a week-long contest, I'll leave it up for two days, then pick a winner when I get home from the Author Fair this weekend.  I'll tell you more about it tomorrow.


Shannon West said...

I feel like this every day, Molly. All it takes is one bad less than stellar review to throw me into a funk for days. Most of the time I avoid Goodreads like the plague! I can get ten compliments and one negative comment and guess which one I concentrate on most? Sigh...

anny cook said...

We are ALWAYS our own worst enemy--ALWAYS! Rock on.

Unknown said...

I think we all suffer from that self doubt. Hugs

Unknown said...

First of all, thanks for your support of my books here. I think you will find that the "growing up" occurs but that I remain faithful to my characters' established personalities to the point that you cheer them on by the time it happens. I hope you continue the series. I would love to get your take on Essence of Time (book 4 which is Rob/Blake stories with a LOT of Jack backstory to give you some frame of reference for his character). It just got a reader's choice award on a menage site. Happy reading.

anyway, as for the real point of your post I want you to know that many times lately I think I have totally the wrong personality to do this "publishing thing." I am driven by demons of "be better, go harder, sell more, and get your name heard." and I always have been. I have gotten a fair few publishing contracts too, but remain a flash point (kind of "loved or hated" for my style and stories) too much and second guess myself to death at times thinking I should just "buck up and write some formula" and maybe get That Big Contract. While ignoring all the big publishers using OUR small-time methods of getting noticed (blogs, indie review sites) while still spending millions on ads and other things that we can't afford to do.

Then again, I have gained some fan and reader traction in the last year and a half that many authors would love to have.

So....what to do? I hear you loud and clear and am planning to take a HUGE step next year, once I finish up the Stewart Realty series and release the hot soccer man trilogy this year. I have a mainstream book I will work on for the entire year, and plan to either find a hard working agent OR a bigger publisher for it. Then again, I may self pub it. God knows that also seems to be The Way To Get Noticed now too!
argh! so frustrating but thank you for being honest and yeah, The Prodigal Son would be an inspiring thing to hear at times like these. (I really should get back to church more often--I forget, even as a preacher's kid, how much that can help).
cheers to you and keep up your good and positive and successful work

Jean Joachim said...

Insecurity is part of all writers. No matter how many books you write, you're always sure this one stinks. I feel that way when I finish a book. I hate it. After I let it sit for a week and reread, I find it's not so bad.
I don't think you can escape that. I haven't found a way yet. And like Shannon says, one nasty review and I'm down for the count. Keep up the good work. We're behind you, cheering all the way.

Cassie Exline said...

Self doubt is a nasty critter that needs exterminated but until that day, we must endure. Look forward and not back -- it's almost Spring!

Renee Vincent said...

Crazy as it sounds, I, too, doubt myself every time a book releases. I've had six new releases since 2010 and you'd think I'd be used to it by now. NOPE. I still think, "OMGosh what if no one likes it? What if people hate the direction I went with this series and trash me all over the internet? What if my writing sucks so bad I lose my readers' loyalty?

How do I overcome this demon, you ask? I don't. The only way I get over this fear is by waiting for that first big review from reviews sites. So far, I've been blessed with 4 and 5 stars and so my fears dissipate. I have no idea what I'll ever do if I get anything lower than that. Probably cry LOL

Molly, everyone doubts themselves at one time or another. What you are feeling is completely normal.

Molly Daniels said...

@Shannon: Exactly:) Why is it we let that one bad comment run wild and push the ten good ones out of our head?

@Anny: You're right; we are:)

@Amber: Thank you:) (((((HUGS))))

Katalina said...

I think a little self-doubt comes with the territory. Getting past it is what makes the difference.
Congratulations Molly on a job well done.

Molly Daniels said...

@Liz: You're very welcome:) I love Jack and Sara, and just want them to be happy. And in my own series, characters come and go, and ultimately find their own happiness.

Thank you for your kind words:) And yes, looking forward to Essence of Time:)

@Jean: LOL....yup, I think book #6 is going to get me raked over the coals by the GBLT community...just hope they 'get' what I'm trying to portray.

@Cassie: Love how you call it a 'critter'! Find the broom/trap and either kill it or send it somewhere else, lol:)

@Renee: I know it's completely normal; I just don't like the fact it took over an entire week of my life. Maybe it just arrived at the same time as a hormonal fluctuation. Who knows?

Molly Daniels said...

@Kat: Thank you:)

Anonymous said...

Molly, that's incredible! I'm no stranger to rough life, so my faith has been my only constant thing in life. Moments like these are what makes all the pain and struggles worth the effort. Congrats on another published novel.

As for self doubt, I think it keeps all of us writers from getting too big of a head. It keeps us balanced.

Thanks for sharing this with us. I'm fairly new as a published author, and I'm self published, so I know all about self doubt. I have received 7 reviews on a 5 chapter preview I put up to test the readers' interest in my particular story. 5 glowing, one that says it's good, but has a confusing delivery and one that was more of a personal attack and riddled with insults than anything helpful.

Guess which one had a deeper impact?
The same person has since then posted another 1 star review on another site talking about how it

"Has potential, but it's not being realized yet."

It should also be noted both of the 1 star reviews {on Amazon, and on Goodreads} are from someone {under different names} whom I stopped talking to long before she "reviewed" the preview on either site.

I've had another published {traditionally published} author read the same preview and give me glowing feedback about it, plus all my crit partners at PNRWriters keep talking about how good it is, even as they suggest ways to improve it further.

Because I know the 1 star reviews are from who they are from, and we have history, I don't put much stock in them, but it still upsets me because it's a 1 star review on an otherwise 5 stars average, which dropped the average to 3.9 stars.

Self doubt creeps in, especially the closer the date to launch the full length novel gets. I'm absolutely my harshest critic, and as I work on the final edits I've found myself questioning every little aspect of it.

However I've had far more positive feedback then negative by a variety of published authors, some of which are also editors for smaller presses, and positive feedback from the writer's conventions I've attended, so it's time to set this baby free and send it into the world.

First novel, so yeah nervousness is running rampant and self doubt in a constant companion during the final edits.

I also pray every morning before I start writing, asking that His Will be done first and foremost. I know I'm a writer and this book is meant to be out there. Way too much has happened in the past year for it not to be what He intends.

Thanks for sharing your post with me. Now that I know it doesn't get any easier as far as self doubt goes, I feel better about my decision to go ahead with the release.

Your post has inspired me to go forward. Sorry for rambling, lol. I tend to do that at times.


Molly Daniels said...

@Kitty: I'm so happy I inspired you to keep going!!!! If writing is your passion, then by all means, NEVER give up! If I'd let the critiques of my Senior English class get to me, I would never have kept writing. But sometimes it's 'write or explode', and then I was fortunate enough to have friends ask 'so what happens next?' after reading a sample chapter. But it's the 'write or explode' factor which tells me I'm on the right track. Eventually the right person is going to see your work and then it will all come together.


Melissa Keir said...

The doubt hits us all. I can't tell you how many times I wonder and worry about my writing and if I'm doing the right thing. But I find that I have to move forward or fall backward so onward and upward. I'm glad you got some validation. I think that a kind word goes a long way to make things feel better!

When spring comes, we are all going to be so much happier!

Harlie Williams said...

Doubt is my middle name. No one read my debut so its hard for me to really sit down and write anymore.

One good thing though, the review blog has exploded and Grand Central Publishing contacted me today about a post/review for one of its authors.


Molly Daniels said...

@Melissa: That validation came at the right time:) All my family could do was offer a shrug and a 'sorry' when I expressed my frustration.

@Harlie my love, your book is on my TBB list!! I promise to bump it up and give you my honest opinion!! GREAT news about your review blog!!

Janice Seagraves said...

Hi Molly,

I have days like that too. I have to keep reminding myself that I love writing.

I have several notes taped up where I see them every day, one says: I am a writer, I write books.

Another one says: You will get another book contract, and I scribbled under it: I did it!!!

Because, I not only got a book contract, but a contract for my entire SF romance series.

You are doing great. Keep up the good work.


Molly Daniels said...

@Janice: That is fantastic news! I'm still submitting my series one book at a time, and book #7 was just picked up. Still have to finish writing book #8, so halfway there:)

Liz Flaherty said...

I don't think we ever get over that need for affirmation. Like Anny said, Molly, rock on!

Molly Daniels said...

@Liz: Thanks:) Maybe it was due to a hormonal fluctuation. Things are a light brighter this week:)

And I'm trying to 'rock on':)

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