For the past year, I've been working on two series of three books each. A contemporary firemen's series set in Clearwater, Florida for Harper Impulse and a bear-shifter series set in the Highlands of Scotland for Random House. Six books that I hope to have finished by April 6th, when the final books of each series are due.
That's right. Two books to two different publishers on the same day. My ex-agent said she forgot to look at my first contract and the dates in it before she encouraged me to take contract number two. My fault: keep a calendar with all your due dates in it, so when a new contract comes rolling in, you can check for yourself. Or, as we like to say, take charge of your life.
I had 3 weeks between the submission dates of two books. Now, I don't know about you, but it takes me a tad longer than 3 weeks to write a full-length book. I had to ask my editor for an extension which went against my work ethic. In every job I've held, I've always met my deadlines.
So, here's where the bit of insanity slips in.
I'm ready--eager, really--to start my next series for Random House. But first, I'm taking a break. I've already had the nervous breakdown. Thanks to too many deadlines too close together. This year, one publisher, one series, one locale. I mean, I can't tell you the times I had my firemen in Florida speaking with a Scottish brogue! The Delete key became my BFF.
I don't think making mistakes is a bad thing. Not always. I learned a lot about myself through this process of over-extension. I've also learned to say, "No." And, at sixty-six, it's about time, don't you think? But society tells us to take on more, to do more, to achieve more. Sometimes we lose the joyous and renewing state of just being, of observing, of listening, of enjoying people important to us. Last year went by in a blur of words. This year, I hope the treadmill slows down....after all, I'm retired!
Here's my book trailer for A HIGHLANDER'S OBSESSION that was one of Amazon's best sellers last year, well, for a month anyhow.