I think every author panics a little prior to the release of their next book, and I’m no exception. In April 2013 when Fire Angel went live, I assumed I’d never feel that initial thrill again. Man! Was I wrong. I’ve stressed over every book released since–some more than others, I’ll admit, but each time I see one of my books up on Amazon, or one of the other e-book vendor sites, I stand a little taller. In Plain Sight , my second book child, awed me for two reasons– first because I adored those characters and second because it proved I wasn’t a “one hit wonder.” A lot of people may say I want to write a book, but they don’t always follow through. I’m proud of myself and everyone else who started and finished.
Three other releases followed, books subsequently taken off the market because of an unscrupulous publisher, Was I depressed about it. Hell, yes! Was I demoralized, ready to quit? Definitely. Did I? No. Believe me, I almost did, but friends and readers convinced me to persevere. There are con men and crooks in every profession and sadly, like many others, I’d fallen prey to not one but two. In a situation like that, it’s easy to doubt yourself, but Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a writing career. It’s hard to put yourself out there and trust again. I had some great stories, already written, ready to sell again, but would anyone else want them?
Was I ready to trust again? Pulling up my big girl pants, and with more than a little hesitation, I submitted Just For The Weekend to Crimson, my publisher in good standing. It wasn’t the same kind of book I’d written before, but it had potential and Crimson agreed. With some editing, it got polished and perfected, and was released within a year almost to the day of my first book. This contemporary romance was edgier, slightly more sensual than my other work, but it found a niche for itself. Incidentally, it won the July 2014 cover contest on Lolly Tova’s site. That honor, won thanks to the assiduous efforts of my friends and fellow authors, has been a huge ego boost.
While the thrill of giving birth to a book isn’t quite the same as giving birth to a child, believe it or not, it comes mighty close. The labor pains–frequently referred to as edits– sometimes are just as nerve racking and painful. Having created a historical romance, a book I’d dreamed of writing forever, I decide to revive The Captain’s Promise and self-publish it. My lovely friend Melinda De Ross created the cover and I struggled with formatting, which in many ways probably resembles sophisticated methods of intellectual torture. That being said, The Captain’s Promise was delivered in early June.
The characters in the books which I create in my mind–which incidentally in a part of my body– are as real to me while I write them as anyone else who’s crossed my path and moved on. I birthed them the same way Zeus birthed Athena in Greek mythology, and sending them out on their own is both scary and exhilarating. That’s the way I felt the night before my July 2014 release, Echoes Of The Past . That book was a stretch for me, my first foray into the realm of the paranormal–no not vampires or werewolves, but ghosts and legends, and something more. I designed the story as a gift, a tribute to my daughter’s best friend who has stuck with her through thick and thin. I also wanted to honor the contribution of the Native Americans to Canada and respect their traditions–a tall order. Secret Cravings Publishing saw the book’s potential and each time I read one of its five star reviews, I’m amazed. The girl on the cover even looks like my Michelle!
Today, I sit biting my nails once again. On His Watch, Crimson suspense romance releases tomorrow and I’m probably more excited and worried than I have been for any of the five books before. Why? Because I believe this is the best book I’ve written to date. I’m proud of all the others, but his one has a special place in my heart. It isn’t the book I’d originally submitted. No. It’s better. It’s been honed and edited into an edge of your seat thriller which I hope will be a bestseller. So, as the evening draws to a close, I count the hours to its official release. For the moment, it’s my newborn, worthy of my attention and love, but it isn’t my only book child. There are others growing in my womb, some close to being delivered others yet to be acknowledged and written. For now, I’m a six book author and proud of it. Who knows what tomorrow will bring? Hopefully lots of sales, and of course I can’t forget the other children…
Looking for my books? Check out my website for buy links: http://www.mhsusannematthews.ca/