Friday, November 14, 2008

Who let this dust settle?!

*dusts off blogspot*

Man, I’ve been neglecting this thing. First let me apologize for my long leave of absence. This past year has been full of ups and downs.

When Chippewa closed, orphaning my titles, I took that badly. Here, I had my dream. I had the publishing contract in hand. I had an editor who I adored. I had a title released and it was performing very well. I still haven’t seen any royalties from those sales and I probably never will. I weathered a divorce, health issues, and personal problems/drama.

Depression is a lurking opportunistic predator and I will admit that I’ve been fighting with it. Everyday things such as checking my LJ, other author boards, myspace and many others lost their appeal. I started titles and couldn’t get the gumption to continue them. It seemed the harder I reached down inside of myself to self-motivate, the further that motivation slipped from my grasp. The stories still ran through my head, but I couldn’t manage to get my fingers moving. It’s hard to market my work when I don’t have any work to market. I made excuses, grew soft on myself, and fell into that glorious time-sucker World of Warcrack...I mean...Warcraft.

During this lull in my writing career, I took some time to do some personal soul searching. Yes, I conducted some heavy research for About to Sin, but I found myself facing deeper questions about myself. I walked a few labyrinths, mediated, prayed, drummed, danced under the moonlight, and danced with fire. I received the most powerful compliment of my life from an elderly Roman Catholic priest. He said, “Never have I met someone who so tenaciously seeks deeper meaning in all that we do in life.” Then, he told me he loved me and reached up from his wheelchair and hugged me. I read a quote posted inside the library of a convent, “How glorious a gift to know who we are when we aren’t being who others need us to be.” I was told by a young Old Catholic priest, “Your writing is your ministry.”

How very humbling.

Each one of those adjusted my life’s focal point and further reminded me that I am who I am. I’ll never be anything more or anything less than that. I am, deep down inside, an author.

The feel of a keyboard beneath my fingers, the clack of the keys, the banging of my head against a wall trying to understand editorial direction, and the thrill of submission hell are what makes my heart pound and my eyes twinkle.

Puffmonkey came home from a convention where she purchased some very hot posters of Hakkai, Youkai Hakkai, and Gojyo from a gloriously talented artist, Kaysha Siemens. Her Deviant Art page. She’d heard of me and that blew me away.

With the support of my friends and family (albeit stressed support at times), I once again picked love over money.

While fighting the tail end of this depression, Freya’s Bower and Alessia Brio (with Phaze) stepped in and accepted my orphaned titles as well as a new title. That helped a little. It made me feel as if I could once again have my dream and I promptly killed another keyboard.

It felt wonderful to have edits again. The vibe of life that surrounds me when I finish a round of edits is a drug. A very addictive drug. Second only to the almost overwhelming hum of energy and life that comes with finishing the writing phase of a novel. A moment of seemingly perfect clarity that makes me feel as if the world is once again a beautiful place.

Today, I saw the cover for Personal Demon. I read through the ARC (advanced reader copy). It’s a small title…too small for an ISBN. But, it’s something. It’s something that will be out there with my name on it. When I get a release date and the stamp of approval on the blurb and excerpt, I’ll post it. I went by Barnes and Noble and checked on “Coming Together: With Pride” and they’ve sold out of their copies including the ones in the warehouse and are waiting on the publisher/distributor for more. That’s something too.

Also today, I opened my LiveJournal and looked at my f-list. Not everyone on my f-list has read my work, but many of you have. You willingly gave my stories some of your free time. You’ve encouraged me. You’ve cried with me and cheered with me. And remembering all of that has been a most humbling and healing moment.

There’s a light rain today. Fall leaves dot my yard. Rascal is curled up on his pillow by the window, sleeping quite soundly. I am an author...

...and I’m back.

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