Crying is such a weird thing. I mean, think about it, basically, you leak from your eyes because of an emotion that you're feeling. Sometimes it's because you're sad. It all becomes too much and the only release is to have a good old sob. Sometimes it's because you're happy and that is much the same.
I'm not the sort of person that cries very often. I much more the type that is all tense-jawed and stoic. That's not to say that I never cry. I was actually watching an old Dr who episode the other day. The Donna-Doctor reunion and I found myself becoming all misty-eyed as they set out together on their adventures. And I read a book recently that had me sniffing back the tears (much to the confusion of my cats!) But in every day life I tend to keep it internalised and the tears only come when something momentous happens.
Something momentous happened today.
I started writing when I was very young and got serious about becoming published when I was in my mid-twenties. This month is actually my five year anniversary of being a published author. I'm not quite sure how I imagined the whole thing to play out. For sure I hoped that I would be published and maybe sell some books. My dream of course was that one day I might earn enough cash to support myself and my family by writing. And yet, I know a lot of people who have that dream and if the last five years have taught me anything it's that it can be a very, very difficult dream to realize. Still, I couldn't, and still can't, imagine anything better than being able to spend my days crafting worlds and creating entirely new people...
Today got me a little step closer to that dream.
When you publish a book, be it with a traditional publisher, an epub or even by self publishing, you never know what's going to happen. You release it into the world and then you spend the days following that release obsessing over the reviews and rankings (at least I do!). Sometimes they're amazing. Sometimes they're not. It's always very, very difficult when they're not. A book that sells only a few copies. A review that tells you that they hate your book and you too for that matter. In some ways it can feel like those books have died a little and your mourn for them because you put so much of yourself into them and it all seems to have gotten lost somewhere. Still, you feel down for a little while and then you pull yourself together because you have to. There's always another book to write.
But then, unexpected things can happen.
Twenty odd months ago Entangled Publishing released my novel, The Seduction Game. It achieved the highest Amazon ranking for me ever. I hit 273 and I was ridiculously thrilled. It didn't last long and it didn't capture many more readers after the fact, but it was a little step towards my dream and one I was very thankful for. Over the next 20 months I worked on other things, my second End of Days Love novel for instance and the next book in the Love Games series. It never occurred to me that something else might happen with The Seduction Game.
Well, today it did. I woke up this morning and TSD was #40 on Amazon. A top 50 bestseller! My highest ever Amazon ranking! Even more amazing, it hit #7 on the Barnes and Noble Nook bestseller list and is still there as I type this update. From out of nowhere one of my babies has come back to life.
I sat in my kitchen at half seven, wrapped in a blanket (it was bloody cold!) and as I looked at those numbers, at what it meant i.e. people were reading MY book, I cried. I'm not sure they were happy tears but they certainly weren't sad. If anything, I think they were tears five years in the making.
Tears of relief.
Tears of gratitude.
Tears of a dream long since chased finally coming a little bit closer.
And so, here I am, saying thank you to each and every one of you who has spent your hard earned money on my musings over the years. To each of you that has stuck with me through book after book after book and those that have just come on board.
It's a ridiculously simple equation in the end. B+R=X.
I will keep bringing the Books. I hope you, the Readers keep coming for them and together we will make X happen. What is X? Well, for now, it seems to be me, sat in a cold kitchen, staring at my phone, and scaring the cats with my (oh so unattractive) sobs. Here's to many, many more!