When I was in high school, I kept a gratitude journal. It involved writing down five things every day that I was grateful for. It was a really nice reminder of the things that made me happy (and a great break from the ridiculously bad emo poetry and high drama diary entries I was writing back then).
2013 was an extremely emotional year. I mean, it started in January with the book deal.
(That was a stupid sentence. Of course the year started in January.)
So anyway. The book deal was, obviously, a MAJOR MAJOR high. We're talking about a lifetime dream coming true. And then your reaction to the book deal when it went live on Publishers Marketplace and I released my dance video into the twitterverse? Absolutely one of the greatest nights of my life. All the love and excitement you guys expressed for me and my book made me cry, and I still smile when I think about it.
It is SO. MUCH. WORK. to get to the book deal phase, right? First, you write the book (then let your CPs shred it, then revise, more shredding, more revising, rinse, repeat). Then you write the query letter. (Or let your CPs write it for you. Love you, Cait and Marieke.) Then you query. Which is not the most fun thing ever. You enter contests. You participate in conferences. You query some more. You revise your query. You get requests for partials and fulls and send your book out. You wait. A lot. It's STRESSFUL.
Plus, ideally, you're working on another book throughout the querying process.
So in my head, it was like- all I thought about was the book deal. There was no "what happens next?" because in my mind, the idea of the book deal itself was a bit of a fantasy. And when it happened, you guys, it was completely surreal. It still is.
When I finally came down off my high, there was work to do. A lot of it. Major, major revisions. I wrote around the clock. I wrote myself into corners and had to find my way out of them. I cried. A LOT. I was convinced I couldn't do it. I cut an entire book's worth of words from my manuscript and wrote more. I thought maybe I was better at dreaming about being a writer than ACTUALLY being a writer. I had some really low moments, and the lack of sleep/social life didn't help much. There was soooo much self-doubt and fear, and that's not something I'm used to dealing with.
When it was all said and done, and the book was in copy edits and my editor was sending me raving text messages fangirling over my book, everything changed. I finally found my way out of the ridiculous hole I'd been in all year.
This is a really, really long way of telling you that I expect 2014 to be crazy--writing book 2, starting book 3, and releasing and promoting book 1. I'm going to do a better job of focusing on the positive and staying out of my own head when I get super stressed.
That's where Thankful Thursday comes in.
Every Thursday, I'm going to post the things I'm thankful for that week. I'd love for you guys to join in! I'll host a party here every Thursday, and there'll be a place for you to link to your own Thankful Thursday post for easy blog-hopping. My first Thankful Thursday post will be Thursday, January 2.
What do you think? Wanna join in?