Friday, July 27, 2012

What’s Your Super Power?

Wonder Worry. Super Hero or Villain in Disguise?

In my family we have a tradition of taking each others' idiosyncrasies and turning them into a badge of infamy known as your super power.  For example, my best friend is Captain Cheap because no matter what it is, she swears it costs too much.  My husband is known as The Number Cruncher because for him, in the end, everything can be broken down into an Excel spreadsheet.  And me, my super power alter-ego is Wonder Worry, because no matter how minor the problem, I can turn it into a potential disaster of apocalyptic proportions in 2.5 seconds flat.  

Now, I thought I had hung up my cape a good five years ago.  My friends had even started referring to Wonder Worry in the past tense.  But with the book release less than 6 weeks away, Wonder Worry is back in full effect, leaping from small setbacks to predictions of impending doom in a single bound.  In fact, I had my first mini-panic attack about 2 weeks ago…over a 4 out of 5 star review for my book.  Instead of being thrilled that someone liked it (or even read it), Wonder Worry immediately started spinning around the room in a tizzy. “What’s wrong with the story?” she cried hysterically.  “They didn’t like it!  I’m missing a STAR!”

Because the reviewer had rated the story with a note in the comment section that read “Review to Come,” Wonder Worry decided that could only mean one thing….the upcoming review would be a scathing rejection.  Faster than Carl Lewis in a 100 meter dash, I began constructing multiple reviews that all started with “This story didn’t suck too bad…” It took my 13 month old daughter’s look of delighted apathy to get me off the ledge.

With 2-weeks worth of distance between me and my meltdown, I am slowly wrestling Wonder Worry back into retirement by remembering that I don’t have to focus on the one star that isn’t there.  I can chose to focus on the 4 stars that are out there shining brightly as a testament to the fact that my story doesn’t suck and that someone besides me may actually like it.   I know I’ve got other super powers somewhere in here, I just need to find a new pair of tights.

So what’s your super power?  Is it lifting you up or weighing you down?

If you’re out there, thanks for reading!
~ Cerece

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Shiny New Thing….

Well - for me, the wait is over. I am making the leap from “author in waiting” to “so excited I’m scared and so scared I’m excited author”.  My first sci-fi novel, Order of the Seers will make her official debut on Tuesday, September 4th 2012 – 2 months from today. 

I chose to announce the book’s release on Independence Day as an affirmation of my decision to publish my book independently.  It’s very nice and very scary to have the full reigns on this baby.  The two months since I decided to stop waiting for an agent and go it alone have felt like a year.  The learning curve has been crazy steep and I am not ashamed to admit that I have been brought to tears several times in the past 10 weeks by the overwhelming length of my things-to-do list, the consequences of choices made without the benefit of perfect knowledge or an institution of experience and the preponderance of conflicting information.  

I’ve doubted myself and my ability to do what was necessary to publish this book at almost every turn.  It’s the reason that I wanted an agent in the first place – to take care of everything and me – to shepherd me through the dark forest of printers, editors and publishers, the foul-mouth monsters of promotion and marketing and the twin witches of praise and criticism.  

Did I mention that I am a proud hermit by nature and a technophobe?  This probably describes 99% of the writers on the planet, so none of it makes me special, but it does explain why more people chose to bury their manuscripts than publish them. 

The fact that I haven’t chosen that path is truly telling.  Despite all my worry and doubt, I have never wavered in my belief in this story.  I wonder if this new audience I’m trying to reach will like it or read it, but I never doubt that it should be shared – that its destiny lies in the light, not under my mattress.  It keeps me going when I feel like I just can’t fit one more thing into 24 hours.   

The other enormously good thing is there couldn’t be a better time to self-publish.  There are so many generous authors who have gone down this road I’m on and are more than willing to share their lessons-learned – for free or very little.  I am privileged to claim some of them as good friends.  Plus, the information (conflicting though some may be) is all out there for you to grab and absorb. And my cup runneth over with facts and figures that have been distilled into actions steps.  

We’ll see how it goes, but go it will.  There’s no turning back now.  For a preview of the book, check out my brand new website  There’s also some video, news on upcoming projects and even a place for you to pre-order a paperback copy.  Sign-up for updates because we’re are off and running and there is so much more to come!

If you’re out there, thanks for reading!
~ Cerece