On March 1 I hit the Publish button on Amazon for my 11th ebook, and my 4th Boss MacTavin mystery:
I know I have a few good reasons to rejoice: a 2-year writing effort has come to fruition...and with this fourth entry Boss MacTavin series has come into its own. Furthermore, I've read that many mystery readers wait for a series to reach four or five entries before they dip in. And three five-star reviews have come in.
So I'm sitting pretty, you might think, with plans for a spin-off series that will be simpler to write since these books are set in Seattle.
PART 2: DESPAIR AND DOUBT
Yet, damned if I'm not in that limbo I always end in between books.
All the usual anxieties and doubts and fears come into play once more. And I wonder like so many others: How can I go on? How can I spend thousands of hours on more books-and see them sink without a sound? Am I getting any closer to something like a tipping point--where decades of hard work begin to pay off? Will readers ever pony up and not expect my books for free? Forget hope faith and will power--do I have the strength to go on?
No spring chicken, my mind fills with cowardly thoughts: I still have time to do something shady and make a whole shitload of money, winning the heart of a foxy young bride...36 years year without a drink--why don't I go out and get ripsnorting drunk?...Why not travel or garden or become a Zen monk--anything instead of spending more lifetimes alone at my desk?
Torn between elation and limbo, eventually I remember a phrase from a very wise man:
PART 3: DISCOVERY AND DEFIANCE
I bless my luck. So far, in every lock-down in the hell of limbo I've found the same wee hole to slip through: the rousing memory of the pleasure I find in the process and the voyage of discovery. And through the glum doubts I am airborne:
I return with a shout to my War Book, a large journal containing my notes and research for the next book. Here I inhabit a world of potential, where no thought is useless and nothing is 'wrong'. I can make this next book wilder and riskier than anything I've done so far. The doubts and fears I mentioned have not, of course, vanished completely. But they've been subsumed in a spirit of play, seasoned with esprit and sass.
A spirit of play and defiance. I won't give up; I won't be whupped although I still hope to be whoopied; I won't betray my talent.
Sooner or later the world will catch up--and learn what it's been missing.
Meanwhile, check out Seattle Red. For just $1.99 through March you'll get a real read on the wild side...and also learn how to shoplift.