A Published Author: year one lament

For the past week, I've been brainstorming ideas for an Instagram Live reading of Charming Dr. Forrester to celebrate its one-year birthday.


It only dawned on me today (March 26, 2022) that it's actually my one-year anniversary of being an officially published author.


The paperback version of Charming Dr. Forrester was published today exactly one year ago. A total accident because I didn't understand how setting up a paperback on Amazon worked when they didn't do pre-orders (ie. it goes straight to publishing, no waiting for the digital version to release).


Thus, my illustrious published author journey began!

 

I feel like I should celebrate my accomplishment except it doesn't feel like one. I don't really feel all that different today compared to other non-anniversary days. And that's kinda been the defining problem for me this past year (and even into some of 2020).


  • I published a book. Yay!

  • But now I need to write and publish another one.

  • Oh.

  • I wrote and published a second book in the SAME year. Woo!

  • But now I need to write and publish another one.

  • Oh.


And so the cycle continues.


It doesn't feel like much of an accomplishment these days to publish a book because so many people are doing it...and WELL! Forget the YEARS it took me to finally finish one manuscript, let alone TWO! That doesn't matter when your book is a blip on the publishing (and readers) radar.


These days well-known authors can get away with publishing a book once every one or two years because they know readers won't forget them. Indie authors? Not so much (unless they go viral that first time around aka not me). And a lot of indie authors are also gifted enough to write and publish quickly to stay in the reader limelight (again, not me).


But who cares about all that, right? Write because you love it and your readers will find it.


Except I can't work up the enthusiasm or motivation to write. Because it seems pointless sometimes to try in an oversaturated market. Because imposter syndrome always sits in the back of my head.


But the main killer is anxiety and depression and family drama.


I'm on meds for two of those things, but I can't exactly escape the other.


Writing used to be a refuge from family stuff, but these days I find it harder and harder to concentrate on stories with happy endings when real life is invading my every thought.


Then, I tell myself to suck it up because other authors have issues, kids, spouses, etc to deal with, yet they still write and publish large volumes of books. And I feel more unmotivated because I lack that strength, that creativity, that determination.


Does that mean I don't really love writing? Am I not a real, serious author? Am I a fraud?


That would make sense considering how many times I tell myself I'm not good enough.


I feel so behind. And yeah, everyone's journey is different, but it's frustrating when you start at literally the same place and time as others and watch them all fast-track ahead of you despite how hard you try to keep up.


I hope my personal life (ie. family drama) resolves itself soon, though I don't really see an end to it at this point. Or I hope I learn how to live with it.


I hope I succeed in forcing myself to write more and perhaps that will usher in waves of creativity and motivation and joy.


I hate letting myself down when I believe I can do more.

And I hate leading readers on or failing their expectations of me because I'm not producing enough or anything at all.

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This wasn't the direction I meant for this post to go, but like that old trend said: "Felt depressed, might delete later." Or something like that...



Don't worry, I'll be doing a positive one-year author post as well to balance this one.


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