Sunday, November 23, 2014

To My Fellow Authors: A Life Happening

I just feel like this has to be said:

I am so proud of ALL of you who are taking back your authorship: canceling editing until your done writing, changing release schedules, not doing $.99 sales every week. Writing what you want, when you want, on your terms.

It's not that we don't love you, dear readers, but we can't keep this pace up and give you the quality of the story that you deserve.

And we want to.

For most of us, writing is not a choice. We have these worlds and ideas in our heads and they don't shut up until we tell their story.  It's necessary to write to get them out and remain sane.

Over time, be it a year or three decades or more, we've come to love those noisy bastards in our heads. We want to tell their stories. And we owe it to them to be told well.

Cranking books out month after month when we aren't feeling it, when we are struggling with real life around us, serves no one. We feel exhausted. The stories lack that magical touch. The editing is rushed. The whole process is rushed and we just make it all that much less enjoyable for everyone. 

We too suffer real life. Sick children, work problems, housing disasters, car trouble, parties, pets, vacation, bingewatching a show, burning dinner, burning bridges. Divorce, death, uprooting, unpassable opportunities, depression, mania, and bad dates - both the fruit and with the opposite sex.

So, shit happens.

My fellow authors--think about this: Anne Rice released her Prince Lestat on 10/28- she announced it in March and it was probably already written. Her next one? April. Five months apart. And I'm sure it's been written for months. Everyone is 'pissed' that George RR Martin is taking so long with next Song of Fire and Ice, but guess what WILL hit the charts instantly. And just look what Sylvia Day did...

Readers, 90% of them, are forgiving and understanding. The last 10% are sadly vocal. As long as you engage them, even without a new release, most will sympathize with A Life Happening.

Writing takes the damn life out if you, and it has be on your own terms... not the terms of marketing or fans (sorry y'all, we love you but...). And to do that with life happening around you, sucking you dry? Well, if you're like me, and you do this because you don't know how not to write, and you love it and you need those characters to shut up... you need to step back and breathe for a while or you will start to hate it. And I love being an author too much to have that happen.

So, *slow clap* for everyone who is doing this on their terms, and learning what those terms are.

And *standing ovation* for the fans who stick with us, and understand-- we will get you that story. Just let us clean up the latest mess.