That was one hoppin’ blog hop! Wow! Many thanks to Lush Book Reviews and JoJo’s Book Corner for inviting me. Man, I was thinking about Easter candy all weekend! I appreciate all the comments that were left on my site, and the winner of one of the very first author copies of SoloPlay is…
Janhvi, I’ll send you an e-mail today, so we can discuss the details.
Now today’s post should be promotional, I’m sure. Y’all know I have a book coming out next week, right? However, that’s not where my head is at right now. I’d rather talk about desire and determination.
I teach pastry arts classes at a local college and I also tutor English. I love it when I encounter a student who is willing and able to transcend the material I have assigned and jump to the next level of understanding, a student who not only does the homework but comes in with questions, recipes or books to discuss. I love students who want to learn because they seem to already understand what it took me (nearly) forty years to learn. If you want it – go get it.
I wish I could go back to my college years and tell myself to stop chasing boys, drinking tequila – wait, no I don’t. That was time well spent. All those crazy years with bad boys made me appreciate my princely husband when he came along. Actually, that’s not true, I almost rejected Mr. Perfect because he was too nice to me, but that’s another story. I digress.
I wish I could tell my younger self that some things are worth doing in spite of the fact that the energy put into them will not always be rewarded with money, praise or…well, anything other than personal satisfaction. I wish I could say pursue your own interests, you fascinating thing! And maybe who cares what he thinks? You want to do it and that’s enough. Maybe even believe in yourself, but not because other people do. Because you do. Alas, I cannot. I can’t regret any of the events or attitudes that shaped me because I’m glad to be who I am, but getting published has made me ponder success, and with success, self-image, confidence and inspiration.
Readers, truly, you would laugh if you knew how many hours I put into SoloPlay. I am not a shove the manuscript under the bed and forget about it kind of girl. I’m a packrat, a fixer, a learner. I believe in doing the work necessary to make each story what I wanted it to be in the first place, even though I didn’t know it when I wrote it. As much as I would love to pretend I’m naturally brilliant (so you’ll want all my stories) I’m not. I ripped SoloPlay apart at least ten times and completely rewrote it. Hours, people. Weeks. Years of labor before this story was sell-able. And even then my genius Samhain editor, Mary Hamilton, made me take it apart and put it back together. Twice.
And you know what is going to happen? It is going to hit the market and some people will love it. I’ll get fan mail and good reviews, and I will cry. And some people will hate it. (Shh! Don’t tell. Nobody talks about that!) I’ll read those bad reviews too, and just for a little while I’ll wonder why I did all that work in the first place. And whether I should bother selling the rest of the stories in the series because, damn, I’m tired. Is it really worth it?
Yup. External reward is not the sole reason for doing worthy projects. Sometimes the easiest recipe is not the best one, and the extra steps won’t show. The hours spent studying for a test will only pay off if the teacher asks the right questions. The motto of my high school was “Not for school but for life we learn.” They tried to tell me. I think I get it now. As a writer, as a human, as a woman – I will continue to learn. Every day. Every story. And yes, it’s worth it.
So I’m not referring to SoloPlay when I say If you want it- go get it. I’m talking about life. Dreams. Goals. Desire. Determination. What do you want? And how are you going to get it?