The time has almost arrived. In less than two weeks, Shifter: A Zie and Dax Novel will become available. I will officially be a published author and honestly, I am terrified.
My fear is beginning to ooze on two levels. Time is ticking so quickly that I’m worried I won’t have everything in place on March 8th when the book goes live. It is also becoming more and more evident to me that by releasing my first book, I am putting an important part of myself out into the world for others to judge, weird bits and all. Being a private person by nature, this comes very close to paralyzing me.
The latter fear is both infinitely larger and a whole lot tougher to talk about, so let’s go there first. These books are not directly about me or my life, but they are definitely a part of me. Publishing them reveals a more tender part of myself to the world than I usually show. I can also be a bit of a control freak, and I have no idea how my work will be received or where any of this may lead. It is a huge leap of faith that will be open to the public. Yikes!
Above all, I hope my novels are fun to read. I’m not expecting to win any literary awards or change the world with my writing, so critical acclaim is not something that specifically worries me. What I do want is for my readers to experience a range of emotions that run the gamut from suspense and fear to laughter and sincerity in only a few lines. I want people to love my characters as much as I do and enjoy spending time in my worlds. I hope I’ve accomplished this, but we’ll soon be able to tell from the reviews. Double yikes!
Now that we’ve discussed feelings, time is something I can easily tackle. It is clichéd to say that time is precious. As a full-time working wife and mom with a big, complicated dream, I had no idea how precious it really was. When I decided to become an independent author, I became solely responsible for the success of that dream, and the weight of that responsibility is not lost on me.
I made the decision to self-publish in January and immediately began my research, reading and listening to everything I could find. For a while, I was overloaded with information, but by the end of that month, I had crafted a 6-week project plan. This became my roadmap to publication.
I manage complex projects as part of my day job, which has helped me to begin to wrap my head around some of the intricacies of self-publishing. At work, I have dedicated time, space, and a team to support my projects. Finding these three essentials for my writing at home has been a little more of a challenge. Waking up at 4:30 each day gives me a solid block of time every morning. This time, cobbled together with any spare moments I can find in the evenings, totals a few daily hours to work on my writing and publishing goals. My husband and a couple of great friends have become my sounding board and cheerleaders. I have managed to claim a strategically placed TV tray and a sliding glass door completely covered with Post-its as a home-base for my writing. So, all in all, it has been going pretty well.
Yet, time is running short and there is still so much I want to have in place when Shifter becomes available. On paper, six weeks feels like a long time, but as my self-imposed deadline is approaching, I am hoping it is enough. It is time to gather my courage and make it happen!
Shifter: A Zie and Dax Novel is currently available for pre-order in e-book form on Amazon and through other booksellers. When the novel goes live, a paper-back and hard-back version will also be available. To learn more about it and my other projects, visit my website (and join my mailing list) at KCRyanAuthor.com.