I thought it would be appropriate to include a photograph I took at a local bookstore closing with this blog post. Like so many others, time and change took its toll on the bookstore.
Take a good look at this photograph and think, as I did when I took it, about how much work had been put into the books stacked on these tables, now offered at 80% off. Each book represents a block of time taken from that writer’s life and, maybe, a little bit of their soul. That brings me to the motto: It’s Only A Book.
To help you deal with the complexity of being a writer, I’m sharing a few of my thoughts on It’s Only A Book.
Are you writing consistently? How long is it taking you to get a book finished? How many things do you let get in your way? The problem so many writers face is not getting their books finished. Do some evaluating and set priorities. It’s only a book if you get it finished.
When you’ve spent three months trying to perfect chapter one, remember: it’s only a book. It will never be perfect, and it doesn’t have to be. You have to be confident enough in your own abilities and your story to keep moving forward until it is written. Climb out of the revision trap and remember it is only a book. God knows where it will end up. On the 80% off table someday. See photograph when your confidence lags.
Getting published comes with a set of different problems but problems nonetheless. A contract is not a magic wand that wipes away all your writer angst. After all, it’s only a book. Not CPR. You are not going to die if your book flops and you are not going to bask in a continuous glow if it hits the NY Times list. That’s not how it works because a new story begins the process all over again.
And, when you have been stabbed in the heart by a rejection letter or a bad review, remember that is part of being a writer. Every writer has to face the cold reality that their baby will not be loved by everyone. But, it will be loved by someone who will think it is much more than a book. Think MISERY…No, don’t do that.
Trust me, writing is full of turns and twists and great surprises even if it is only a book. I hope you will always enjoy the ride. I do!
Patricia Preston writes mainstream romances where love matters most. You are her reader if you like fun, passionate, feel good reads. Must haves in her writing cave include sweet tea and music. Besides writing, she loves music, history, taking road trips, and anything containing chocolate. Her dream-come-true would be a townhouse in the French Quarter. She never misses Supernatural or the Walking Dead. She is repped by the Seymour Agency and currently working on a contemporary romance series, Love Heals All, for Lyrical Shine imprint of Kensington Books.
Available titles include Amazon best sellers, “The Yard Sale” and “Laid to Rest,” as well as historical romances: To Save a Lady and Almost an Outlaw. Coming in September is the first book in the Love Heals All series from Kensington Boos, One Week in Your Arms. Also available for pre-order is the second book in the series, Everything His Heart Desires.
My newest book, ONE WEEK IN YOUR ARMS, is mainstream contemporary romance filled with witty, charismatic characters. The fun, fast-paced plot features a secret baby, a billionaire baby daddy hero who needs a pretend girlfriend for a week, and a pretty doctor who is desperate to keep her child a secret. Unfortunately for the intrepid heroine, Marla, she needs money for her community clinic so she has no choice but to spend a week in paradise with the one man who can destroy her life. How can she say no?
ONE WEEK IN YOUR ARMS is the first book in Love Heals All series where romance causes havoc, heartache, and humor for a cast of unsuspecting doctors until they realize love heals all. published under the Lyrical Shine imprint of Kensington Books. Each book can be read as a stand-alone. They do feature the same location and continuing characters. The next book in the series is EVERYTHING HIS HEART DESIRES, coming in Jan 2017.
She picked up the letter opener. Her heart palpitated in sheer terror as she slid the opener under the flap of the envelope. With the envelope open, she peeped inside to see one folded sheet of stationery.
After six years, what could he possibly have to say?
She pictured him, standing beside a black truck in the drive of Royal Oaks, an old estate belonging to his grandmother. She recalled the date. June twenty-eighth. The day they had said goodbye had been a warm, blustery day in
Tennessee. A summer storm was heading toward the rolling hills near Nashville.
The wind made a mess of
Carson’s unruly dark hair. His dark blue eyes were hidden by a pair of mirrored lens aviators, and his alpha-male physique tested the seams of his polo shirt.
“If I’m ever back in town, I’ll look you up,” he promised as their casual affair came to an inevitable end. For three weeks, they had been together and finally, the time had come for them to go their separate ways. She hadn’t realized it would be so difficult.
“Sure.” She forced a smile of goodwill. After all, they weren’t parting in anger, or in love for that matter. And it was unlikely that she would ever see him again.
“I had a great time,” she confessed boldly. She’d loved every minute of their brief, steamy affair. Talk about a summer break to remember. She grinned.
He gave her cheek a stroke. “You’ll make a great doctor.”
“You think so?”
“Yeah.” He grinned. “You certainly know all there is to know about male anatomy.”
“Yours, at least.” She laughed. Then she hopped up on her toes and gave him a quick kiss. “Goodbye, Carson Blackwell.”
She stepped away from him. Now was the time to face what was ahead. A grueling three-year residency. There would be no more time for long summer nights, tangled sheets, and sighs against swollen lips. She walked toward her small, sturdy hatchback. Before she opened the driver’s door, she looked up and met his gaze.
“Goodbye,” he called.
At that moment, she’d had an odd sensation in her chest that her life was never going to be the same.