In the immortal words of John Lennon, "Another year over…and what have you done?" (Well, close enough anyway).
In 2015, I did quite a lot actually. It was a year of firsts for me, which is pretty exciting since I'm now 44, and well past most of the firsts in my life.
- My first published novel.
- My first short story included in an anthology.
- My first turn as guest author at a con.
- My first book fair behind the table.
- My first radio interview.
- My first poster in a Barnes and Noble window
- My first royalties check
Though I've played at writing more and less seriously off and on my whole life, it all felt much more real this year. I'd say 2015 was my first year as a "real" writer. For me, the moment I first felt like a real writer was was when I realized I could introduce myself as a writer and then point to a publication out there in the world, rather than talking about the unpublished stuff I've written.
So, now I've got to keep this up. It hasn't been easy. Getting a book contract didn't instantly mean I was able to give up my day job and concentrate solely on writing, so I definitely struggled this year to balance promotion and writing with my day job and my family life. As I move into 2016, I want to keep on becoming more and more real.
Because even though I'm realer than I've ever been, it still doesn't feel totally legit. I still get a little of that fear. You know the one? Where the Scooby gang shows up and unmasks you as an imposter?
So how do I become more real?
I think I write more! I've got a contract for the sequel, Change of Life, and a planned release date of April 20, 2016. But I can't stop there. I'm 2/3 of the way done writing the three-quel. And now, I'd like to get back to some of the other writing projects I've begun, and others that have just stayed in my heart and brain as ideas. Real writers write, after all. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.
This posting is part of the Insecure Writers Support Group blog hop. To check out other posts by writers in a variety of places in their careers, check out the participant list. This group is one of the most open and supportive groups of people I have ever been associated with. If you write, you should check them out!
Wow, you had a lot of fabulous first! Congratulations!!! I'm really impressed with the guest author at a con. Very cool. I'd love to be in that position someday. I'm glad you were able to balance life with promotion and such this year. I'm a bit nervous for that in 2016. I'm debuting in the YA and MG markets at the end of the year, and the idea of all the promotion and marketing is kind of stressing me out. It's unknown territory for me. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. All the best to you in 2016!ReplyDelete
Thanks! If you're interested in doing the con-thing, I recommend looking for a smallish one geographically near you as a starting point. If you have writer-friends that are further in their careers than you, that can help, too--they can invite you to be part of something they are doing. Best to you, too!Delete
Congrats. To be realer is a very good thing. :-)ReplyDelete
Anna from elements of emaginette
This whole conversation makes me feel like the Velveteen Rabbit :-)Delete
Congrats on an amazing year!ReplyDelete
I totally get that fraud feeling, and I haven't done any book tours/signings/cons. But I have published three books so I feel confident in referring to myself as a writer.
Hope this year is as stellar as the last!
Isn't it funny how we can say in one paragraph that we feel confident and like a fraud? And both are true!Delete
Congrats on a very impressive list of firsts! The Barnes and Noble window poster--wow. I'm drooling! Thanks for sharing :)ReplyDelete
Here's my January IWSG post
Thanks! I took a picture of me next to my poster in the window, making sure that the B&N logo was there. I'll be keeping that one to look at on difficult days.Delete
2015 was a great year for you, congrats! At least now you know you can do it. Good luck continuing down that path in 2016.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Charity. Here's hoping I can keep it up.Delete
Congrats on all those wonderful accomplishments in 2015! I'm sure 2016 will be equally exciting for you.ReplyDelete
Thanks so much.Delete
It sounds like you completely rocked 2015!ReplyDelete
Ignore the fear. It's all in your head (as my self help books say). Act like a real writer and you will be one.
I do a fair job of telling me not to listen to myself, most of the time :-)Delete
Wow, your 2015 sounds so exciting! I published my first novella in 2015 and I'll have a story in an anthology this year. I'm sure your 2016 will just as action-packed.ReplyDelete
It was quite a year, for sure. I'm hoping 2016 will top it though!Delete
Good year! I hope there's an even better one waiting for you ahead!ReplyDelete
Thanks! I hope your 2016 is stellar, too.Delete
Yeah, that book contract doesn't really change your life overnight. You realize in the end that all we can do is write our best book.ReplyDelete
Truth. Though I still like to fantasize about sudden sweeping changes like that.Delete
Well done! A great year ... thanks to all your hard work! Here's to real writers!ReplyDelete
Happy new year! Congratulations on all your 2015 accomplishments. May 2016 be even better yet as you accept more and more your rightful place as a working writer!ReplyDelete
Thanks so much! May your new year bring you closer to your dreams as well!Delete
Wow! You have a lot of "firsts" in that list. Congratulations! Keep up the good work. Best wishes for a terrific 2016.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Diane! Right back at you!Delete