This past month has opened up an entirely new chapter in my life. What an unexpected gift! I am now of an age where most people’s chapters are mostly on observe, recycle and repeat. There’s no more teenage ecstasy or agony, no more stressful workdays, no more children to raise… One can just enjoy the grand-kids, reflect on the beauty of the changing seasons and note that time is passing just a little more quickly with every blazing sunset.
But not for me—not yet. Oh, I still enjoy my grandchildren and take solace in the artistry of nature but life has shifted significantly since I decided to finish writing my first book almost 3 years ago. I loved getting back to writing, exploring my creativity, mining my memories and I even enjoyed all the editing and weekly discussions with my writing coach. Life took on deeper, richer colours.
Then came what I call the negative times. My beta readers ripped open several degrees of self-doubt. Some questioned why anyone would be interested in my personal journey and others read the manuscript and just saw ‘revenge writing’. I lost my way for a bit and didn’t know what advice to take on and what to discard. But I got busy adding to and redoing parts of my book in accordance with some concrete suggestions.
Then came the months of submissions to publishers: the rejections, the approvals by those whose only mission is to make money, and the great void of no answers at all. I know that every writer goes through this, even the most famous and successful, but it takes you to a place where you no longer know whether what you have written is of any value or not. You just don’t know anymore.
Well, I finally found Booklocker and got my book published. It came out in Paperback the first week of November and in Ebook soon after. I can now punch in my ISBN and see that the book is available at online bookstores all over the world—Australia, Mexico, New Zealand, Japan, Europe, Scandinavia… Wow!
So far the feedback is all positive. People are enjoying my book! I am officially an author! People ask me to sign their books (I had to Google the protocol for that). I have recently been asked to interview on a podcast that originates in Dublin, Ireland, not to mention a recent request to speak at a local bookstore in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico!
These days are filled with overwhelming joy. Yes, I am old enough to know that this is only a moment in time but I will take it! It fills my heart with happiness to realize that people are reading my book and getting their own personal inspiration from what I have to say. I am grateful.
And, despite all the busyness that having a published book brings, I will soon be sitting down to begin my next book! Here’s to the future—as busy and bright as it gets!
Life events connect in mysterious ways to light our paths.Sharon Bazant, Nine Years in Bangkok: Lessons Learned