Okay, I lied, on two counts. I’m writing this the night before my release date because I still have a day job—those teenagers won’t teach themselves—so I won’t have time to write a blog on my actual release date.
Count two? Letting Go isn’t actually my first book. My first book shall remain nameless and hidden deep, deep on my hard drive, never to see light of day. It was a cool concept, but the execution? Not so good. Most authors have at least one of these under-the-bed books, the term coined back when writers used typewriters or wrote by hand.
Everyone keeps asking me if I’m excited for my book release. To tell you the truth, I don’t know what I am. It’s really odd, almost like I’m having an out-of-body experience and I’m watching this whole event unfurl from afar. Reviews have already started trickling in from the ARCs (advance reader copies), and for that reason, I’ve avoided Goodreads like the plague. Before now, the only people who’ve read my work have been trusted friends and family, people who care if they hurt my feelings.
Okay, that’s not true, either. (Dang it! These lies keep flying onto the page!) I’ve entered my fair share of contests. Letting Go was actually a 2014 Golden Heart finalist. So anonymous judges have read my work. But I was just as anonymous—my name was not on the entry. Tomorrow (today for those reading this) marks the first time my book will be available en masse to anyone who wants to shell out the money to read it.
That’s scary. My students can read it. My co-workers can read it. My bosses can read it. My neighbors…you get the idea. And they’ll know I wrote it.
Weird. It’s just weird.
I’ve been a book nerd—ahem, book lover my whole life. I’m written off and on my whole life and started writing seriously with the intent of publication in the last few years. My release date is the realization of a dream for me.
And I’m still at a loss for how I feel. Numb, I think.
But I do know how I want my readers to feel. I want to take them out of their daily grind. I want them to lose themselves in Cori and Luke’s story. I want them to sigh with contentment as they finish that last page and close the virtual cover.
That’s why I write. If my book makes the reader keep turning the pages in anticipation, then I’ve done my job. If my book makes the reader feel something, then I’ve done my job. If my book makes a reader’s world better, even if only for a few hours, then I’ve done my job.
And I’ve got to say…it’s a pretty cool freaking job. I can’t wait to see where it takes me next.