I've never been one to doubt my skill as a writer. Other authors share their angst--feelings of not being good enough, worry that people won't like their books, fear the ideas will run dry, etc. etc. I can empathize but not really relate. I've always been very confident about my craft...or maybe delusional is a better word... But all of a sudden, I'm having self-doubts. I think it's that mass market paperback contract and the advance I have to earn back. I don't have a huge following. Why would a romance reader standing in the aisle of a Barnes and Noble pick my book out of the many familiar authors on display? I'm jittery just thinking about it...and I'm only on my second cup of coffee. Plus, this is a new line of books for Kensington, and I'm one of their guinea pigs, uh, I mean launch authors. So, I don't even have a familiar little emblem on the spine to draw loyal readers.
So, what do I have going for me? What will make that reader reach for my book? The first thought to pop into my head--the cover. My editor tells me they're working on it now, even though the book won't release until 2018. I've shared my ideas for a concept. Who the heck knows what I'll get, but it won't be a half-naked man. This is romantic suspense, and their focus will be on a suspenseful cover. I love scenery covers, but my greatest fear is you MUST HAVE name recognition for scenery covers to work for you. People don't know me from Adam.
Oh, and on the cover note...my editor also told me they need an author photo on the inside back cover. When I mentioned this to my daughter, she stared at me in horror. "Please don't tell me you're going to use the one you have up on Facebook?" So, I made a panicked phone call to get my hair cut (it's been a year and looks like hell) and another to the photographer who took both my daughters' senior pictures. She's pure magic, but I seriously doubt I'm going to look as awesome as my gorgeous, skinny, young girls. No one is that good... Then I stood in my closet for an hour wondering why I own nothing that will make me look like a best selling author...hey, appearances count, right? Anyway, the photographer is squeezing me in later today, so please hope for the best.
Back to my angst...I'm currently writing the last chapter of the first book in my SIREN COVE series. For the first time in, well, EVER, I'm wondering if the book will work. They wanted traditional romantic suspense, and I aim to please. I've got a very dark undertone to the suspense, plus a secondary mystery with a creative twist. I've tried to tie it all together and think...hope...pray...I've succeeded. But I'm worried. Will new readers (the one's who're going to pick up my book despite the fact there's no naked man on the cover) keep flipping those pages to see what happens...or are they going to find the plot too convoluted? I'm hyperventilating just thinking about it. Is this book clever...or did I try too hard? I guess I'll find out.
We all have a safety zone, and I'm out of mine. What about you? Do you freak out over new and different or take it in stride? Or do you stay with what's familiar and comfortable and doesn't give you an ulcer?
The first two books in my current series, BORN TO BE WILDE, are available now. People seem to like them, but I could use more reviews...just saying. All buy links are on my website. Or, click on the covers to go straight to Amazon. Happy reading!