The writing community is a tight-knit group. We support each other, critique for each, squee at the good news, and consume pints of ice cream at the bad. But, the biggest thrill is watching a fellow author move from “aspiring” to “published”. Romance University co-founder, Adrienne Giordano, shares with us an “a-ha” moment she had on her journey.
As our fabulous RU readers know, this has been a big year for me. In September of 2010, I received “the call” from Carina Press that they wanted to acquire my romantic suspense Man Law. Shortly thereafter, they acquired the other two books in the series and have contracted a fourth.
It’s been an exciting year, but I’ve needed to learn a few painful lessons in time management. In the last five months, I have been through nine rounds of edits on three books. Each book had a content edit, a line edit and a copy edit. At one point in May, I was in two different rounds of edits on two books.
That’s when I pondered the definition of insanity.
Add to this the marketing tasks (website upgrade, building author pages on all the social networking sites, etc.) that go into a book launch and it has been a rompin’ stompin’ beehive of activity.
I’m thrilled to say my Carina Press experience has been wonderful, but I’ll admit there were stressful moments of looming deadlines, blog posts to be written, responsibilities to my family and, of course, my RU pals. With three books releasing, sleep became a luxury I couldn’t afford. And if you know me, that’s not a good thing.
At the height of my insanity, when my body and brain brazenly laughed at my attempts to push through the exhaustion (yes, it was reminiscent of the first weeks of being a new mom), I did the only thing I could.
I gave in.
Yep. After all the grinding, making lists, trying to focus, ignoring my body’s plea for rest, I realized I was missing out on the opportunity of a lifetime.
I suddenly realized I would never again be a debut author and I was letting the experience slip by without allowing myself to soak it in.
From that moment, I began to take time every day, no matter how crazy the day became, to appreciate the gift I’d been given. I also discovered there were (and are) emotionally charged moments that would sneak up on me.
One “sneaky” moment came at the RWA conference when I was in my hotel room gathering my marketing materials for the
Goody Room. Tracey and Kelsey (my RU partners in crime and longtime critique partners) each picked up something and the three of us began the journey to the Goody Room. There we were, each of us holding some piece of promo material for Man Law and the moment became something more than my two pals helping me. Kels and Tracey had been with me through all the rejections and dashed hopes and the fact that the book was about to be published filled me. Somehow it seemed fitting that, together, the three of us would arrange my marketing materials for my debut book.
Another big moment of the RWA conference was attending the legendary Harlequin author party. Now, if you know anything about the RWA conference, you’ve probably heard people talking about this party. For four years, Kelsey and I shared a running joke about crashing it. This year, I was invited. That alone was a rush.
On one wall of the ballroom there was a jumbo screen that flashed hand-picked covers for all attendees to see.
So, yes, seeing my cover on that screen choked me up. I even cried a little as the emotions of the week consumed me. Years of hard work and I’d finally gotten to see my name on a cover.
This is a crazy business we writers choose to torture ourselves with. We need to find those nuggets of good fortune. No matter how big or small, we need to take those moments and store them away for the down times because, as we all know, those down times will come.
And when they do, I’ll be able to say I took the time during my debut author year to soak up the good stuff.
RU Crew have you had your a-ha moment during your debut year? If you are unpublished, what questions do you want ask Adrienne about the other things she discovered on her journey?
Adrienne Giordano writes romantic suspense and women’s fiction. She is a Jersey girl at heart, but now lives in the Midwest with her work-a-holic husband, sports obsessed son and Buddy the Wheaten Terrorist (Terrier). She is a co-founder of Romance University blog. Adrienne’s debut romantic suspense, Man Law, is available from Carina Press. Her second book, A Just Deception, will be available from Carina Press on September 5, 2011. For more information please visit www.AdrienneGiordano.com. Adrienne can be found on Twitter and Facebook
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