One year ago today, I was a month away from becoming a first-time grandmother. Don’t even get me started on how these eleven months have flown by; as I fell deeply in love with my granddaughter. Today though, marks one week until my “literary” baby’s first birthday.
What a year!
My literary baby, Living Out Loud, was “conceived” with love; and to my delight, she has also been received with love. Never, in a million years, did I think I would have penned (and self-published) a book. Never, in a million years, did I expect readers to enjoy it so much.
Although, LOL, was conceived way back in 2010, it took me four years to deliver her—I didn’t think I could do it. (Who’d have thought that my gestation period would be longer than that of an elephant.) Just like any first-time mother, the labour of delivery was very painful and scary. Many new moms only wish they could delay the process by burying it in a drawer like I did; but I had a team of family and friends by my side encouraging me to keep going—keep pushing. Then it happened—on April 11, 2014, she quietly entered the world with millions of other literary babies hoping to make their mark in life.
So what have I done this past year?
- Came out of the closet as an author
- Participated in two book fairs (Toronto Word on The Street and Inspire! Toronto International Book Fair)
- Had a radio interview with Stu Taylor
- Became active on social media: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, and most recently, LinkedIn (“active” still being a very fluid term—I’m still learning and/or hiding my head in the sand most days)
- Stopped getting my feelings hurt whenever my Twitter follower-numbers dropped inexplicably
- Faithfully kept up a weekly blog habit (sometimes twice a week when struck with a quirky thought that moved me to indulge in some extra creativity)
- Got my baby on the shelves of, more-than-a-handful, brick-and-mortar independent book stores
- Saw that she is now listed at the Oakville Public Library (as well as with the vendor, LSC, who supplies books to more than 200 Canadian libraries)
- Actively scheduling book events/signings (three coming up in the next three months)
- Talking up my book whenever (and wherever) I can (and handing out postcards like they are going out of style)
So to what avail?
Where did it all get me?
- My savings are considerably depleted from the self-publishing and self-marketing expenses
- I have no life outside of my full-time job, marketing expectations, and writing (but yet still not able to devote as much time as I’d like to the un-born literary siblings of my baby
- My dogs are barely on speaking terms with me because of our lack of daily walks
- I feel like I’m spinning out of control
- I accomplished something that very few people can put on their resume: author
- I feel more validated because of the overwhelmingly positive feedback from my readers
- I have discovered a passion for writing that I never knew existed
- I have a burning desire to make this new-found passion my full-time job
So now what?
I spent years ignoring listening to people say, “You’ve missed your calling—you should be a writer.”
Now I’ve done it.
Now, how do I bring home the bacon in a way that we can still afford bacon? (Mmmm… bacon…)
Birthday party clown?
Professional poker player?
Those are the questions unanswered right now.
Therefore, I guess this month’s task (in addition to keeping up with everything else):
Figure out what I want to be when I grow up.
Stay tuned to the ever-angst-filled life of your favorite quirky Veronica.
Oh… and send money… Yes… bacon money would help.