This post was originally posted at the Petit Fours and Hot Tamales blog on Monday, October 31, 2011.
Today is Halloween. Typically, Halloween is a time where people face some of their biggest fears. A few are able to conquer these fears, while others realize they never will.
I'm all about facing my demons. Earlier this month, I stared down the belly of the beast and pulled the trigger on a project I've been contemplating all year. This month I jumped into the self-publishing world with my book, Drool Worthy.
Okay, so it wasn't all that dramatic since the story I self-published was a short story, it was one I posted here on the Petit Fours and Hot Tamales blog two years ago, and I listed the price at FREE. But I did all this for a reason. Hopefully, this is the first of many projects. I'd heard the uploading process could be quite complicated and changes were often required in order to complete the publication. I wanted to start small and work with something I could easily make changes to.
The experience was eye opening and, regardless of a few formatting issues, pretty darn sweet. Promoting YOUR own story is a huge boost to a writer's ego. Typing "by Tami Brothers" on Twitter, Facebook and Google + has been the coolest thing since Rosette donuts (and no one gets between me and a Daylight Donuts Rosette - which I used as a celebratory treat after facing this fear). Even now I get chill bumps when I click over to Smashwords and watch the download counter rise from one day to the next (okay, sometimes I've caught myself checking it hourly, but I've heard that urge slowly fades).
My first review was a huge Yippee moment (THANK YOU Maxine!!!!!). My first fan e-mail was stunning (THANK YOU Shanna!!!!). My husband reading my writing for the first time brought tears to my eyes (*sniff*sniff*).
As I prepare to brave the big *Amazon upload* next, I'm also making plans to self-publish two more short stories by the end of this year. But even with this self-publishing marathon, I'm not giving up the dream of traditional publishing. In fact, seeing my name on the cover of Drool Worthy has spurred my imagination, pushed me to sit my butt in front of the computer and given me the encouragement needed press harder towards that dream.
My biggest fear was putting myself out there for criticism and censor. With this step, I think I'm on my way to conquering that. I'm sure I'll see the criticism at some point in the future, but at the moment it's a real treat riding this publication wave. I definitely plan to enjoy it.
Drool Worthy: Will all-work-and-no-play keep Marianne from finding a great guy? Or will the pastry chef be in exactly the right place when opportunity walks through the front door?
I'll leave you with a peek into my next self-publication project. Jasmine's Quest is scheduled for release right after Thanksgiving.
Jasmine's Quest by Tami Brothers
Another freaking cemetery. Yay.
“Babe, watch your step.”
I sidestepped a mass of rotten leaves, barely avoiding ruining my new Gucci ‘Alexa’ high heel platform leather boots. Damn, that was close. What the hell had possessed me to wear these tonight anyway? Oh yeah. The fact that tonight would be the last time my boyfriend ever saw me again. Judging from the hungry looks he kept shooting my way, the boots were 100% worth the next six months it would take to pay for them.
“Thanks.” My throat tightened around that one word. He didn’t notice. Of course he wouldn’t. Not with the excitement radiating from every inch of his body. Three hours of him drumming the anthem for the reality TV show, Survivor, on the steering wheel during the drive down had set my teeth on edge. Yes, it had been annoying, but his excitement had been almost contagious. Almost. If I ever doubted that this was the one gift that would make him truly happy, his reaction more than proved my sacrifice would be worth it.
The yell was a battle cry from across the cemetery and a knife in my chest.
“Find something?” Please say no.
“Devereux. It’s right here with the coat of arms flanking the name. Baby, this is definitely the place.”
Crap. I am too damn good at my job.
I knew it the moment I found the reference. The moment a fizzier of awareness slithered up my spine. I’d been looking through a trunk of old books when I caught the description of the Georgia cemetery in an old dusty volume buried in the museum’s private collection. The initials JAC etched into the spine of the book drew my attention. Not the writing itself, but the flourish of each letter that was the exact design on a blank photo album Lucien gave me for my thirtieth birthday last month. A book with my initials engraved in the spine. The same exact inititals as on the diary. Apparently fate was a fickle bitch and she had a pretty big grudge against me.