Saturday, August 30, 2014

Feeling Lost by Diane Burton

From the previous posts, the “Roses” like telling stories about getting lost. I’m the navigator whenever we go anywhere. Give me a map and the Garmin and I can get us anywhere. Except for that one time in the late 1980s when I told Hubs to take the wrong exit off the Beltway in D.C. No Garmin and he wouldn’t let me turn on the overhead light to read the map because the area had deteriorated. Our kids have never let me forget that. Never mind I haven’t gotten us lost again.

You see, I’m a bit of a control freak. (Bet you didn’t know that. LOL) I get very anxious if I don’t know exactly where we are. Hubs likes to go for drives. Since he has a better sense of direction than I do (plus a compass on the dash) it doesn’t bother him to wander. Not me. I know I should trust him. But... I could say I’m from Missouri and you have to Show Me. My mom was. Does that count?

When I began my writing career, I knew exactly where my manuscripts were—which editor or agent had which one, their responses, dates, etc. I even made up a spreadsheet, one for each manuscript, for the information. That all ended when I got an agent. It was a difficult time back then when I was working full time and our mothers were in ill health an hour and a half away. I didn’t have the time and energy to handle the submitting (or writing, for that matter). So I was glad someone else was taking care of that. Or so I thought. When I asked her where the manuscripts I’d sent her were, she evaded, though because she talked so much I didn’t realize until later that she never really answered my questions. Eventually, I ended our relationship. I was fortunate that nothing really bad happened, except stalling my career for four years. I felt totally lost, anxious, and depressed.

When I began writing again and took back handling my career, the anxiety left. I knew where I was. Unfortunately the landscape had changed dramatically. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads, blogs and blog hops. I didn’t know what they were, let alone how to use them. Manuscripts weren’t printed out and mailed anymore. Email was the norm. I was always computer literate, ever since Hubs brought home that TRS-80. But now I felt lost again. Thanks to generous people, this old dog learned the new tricks.

Then a writer friend mentioned self-publishing. Wow. I could handle my entire career. Not only did I know where my books were (I’d put them there), I knew exactly how many were sold at any given moment. That’s not to say I'm one of those indie writers who makes tons of money and hit the best seller lists. I'm satisfied to know that I'm in control. I'm lost anymore.

In my latest science fiction romance, my heroine wants to shed her previous life. When given the chance, she’s faced with a dilemma. Getting the career she wants versus doing what is right. Talk about being lost!

Socialite Jileena Winslott has perfected the image of the spoiled, rich, bubble-headed daughter of an industrial magnate. In reality, she’s a smart, savvy aide to her father in social situations where she is his eyes and ears. She yearns to be her true self and run the family business. When her father sends her on a covert mission to the Outer Rim, she has the chance to prove herself. Big problem. He insists she take along a fake fiancé—the man she’s secretly loved for years.

Security Officer Laning Servary has better things to do than babysit a spoiled rich girl on a tour of the Frontier. If he refuses, he can kiss his career good-by. Then Jileena’s father sweetens the pot. If Laning keeps her safe, his family will receive the land they share-crop. He can’t refuse.

In the close quarters of her ship, Laning and Jileena discover they aren’t who they seem. Pirates, weather, and her recklessness threaten to derail the mission. As Laning and Jileena revise their impressions of each other, they’ll have to make hard choices about their goals. Can their budding love survive?

The Chameleon is available at: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, Kobo, Smashwords

I blog here on the 8th and 30th of each month and Mondays on my own site


Elizabeth Rose said...

Diane, great article.

I know what you mean because I am a control freak too. And men in cars trying to get places - don't even get me started with that. At least nowadays, they just have to listen to the girl's voice on the car's GPS.

Should be simple, but it still isn't.

Your book sounds great. Good luck with your writing.

Jannine Gallant said...

My favorite thing about indie publishing is the control. Yes, we need editing, but we have control over what we change. We can chose what we want in a cover. We can decide our own release date. No one tells us how or where to promote. For a fellow control freak, it's heaven! Great post.

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

I get tired of being pushed around too and am thinking of giving Indie a try once I get my contracts fulfilled. One never knows what lies ahead...thank goodness.

Margo Hoornstra said...

I can attest to your navigating skills, Diane. Being directionally challenged, I can sit in your back seat confident of getting where I'm going. Thank you for that. Just dipped my toe in the indie waters myself. Jannine made me do it! LOL. Thanks to those who've gone before.

Diane Burton said...

Thanks, Liz. Never knew how many control freaks I know. LOL

Jannine, absolutely we need editing. I'm so close to my story I can't see the flaws.

Vonnie, I wish you well. Do try indie publishing. It's a whole new world.

Margo, I miss those trips to our chapter meetings. Almost wish I hadn't moved. Note I said almost. :)

Rebecca Grace said...

Good blog, Diane. I know just what you mean about feeling lost. I can't believe how much has changed in publishing in the past few years. Yes, it can make one feel lost... but then again I'm one of those people who always seems to end up taking extra turns to get where I'm going. I've grown used to it so I just keep going. I may arrive late, but I hope to get there eventually.

Diane Burton said...

I know what you mean, Rebecca. I've done things the hard way, too. Thanks to the wonderful writers I've met online, I've managed to find the shortcuts.

Alicia Dean said...

Enjoyed the post, Diane. I have definitely felt lost at times in my writing career. It is great to feel in control. I am so thankful for the opportunity Indie publishing has given authors. I also love being with Wild Rose Press for various reasons, so I feel a nice mixture of both works well for me. :) Chameleon sounds great. I will HAVE to read it soon!

Leah St. James said...

Your organization and spreadsheets would make my hubby weep with joy, Diane. :-) I can barely find my laptop on m desk. I'm organized -- it's just all in my head!