When your first book was published, was the experience everything you dreamed it would be? For me, it was quite different than what I expected. In 2005, when I first walked into a national chain bookstore and saw my brand new novel on the new release table, it was a rush. I was proud. I felt like I was on top of the world. I couldn’t wait to see customers gather it up in their arms and rush home to read it. Then I stood back and watched as shoppers picked up my book, glanced at the back cover copy, and put it down with no more interest than in choosing one banana over another at the supermarket.
Didn’t they realize that book cost me 3 years of my life? How could they pass judgment on it within 5 seconds?
Reality set in. Not everyone will want to read my book. Not everyone will like it if they do read it. And I found out rather fast that once a book is published, the real work begins.
Today, I’m about to start (with co-author, Lynn Sholes) my eighth novel. My books have won awards, become bestsellers, and been published in many languages. And yet, every day I face the reality that the true test of my success or failure is what the customer does when they stand over that literary produce bin and pick what they think is the ripest banana. It’s about as scary as it can get.
As a full-time writer, I have the best job in the world. I would not trade it for anything. But a word to anyone dreaming of publishing their first book: be careful what you wish for. You just might get it.
So when your first book came out, was it everything you dreamed of? And if you’re still working at getting that first banana out there, what are you dreaming it will be like?
Coming this spring: THE SHIELD by Sholes & Moore
Einstein got it wrong!