I am an impatient person.
(Said the author who took a year and a half to write the book that was promised six months ago.)
My editor will tell you this. She can feel it in the air like an electrical current as I tap my toes, drum my fingers, clean the house (huh?), load a new web browser onto my computer, troll facebook like it's my lifeline to sanity (the opposite is undeniably true), and pretend I'm not waiting for her red-marked pages with every fiber of my being.
Yes, it's true. I've become addicted to corrections. Not correctness. Definitely not that. Corrections. Those little squiggles, marks that mean x, y, and z that I'm supposed to know because I'm an author, and all the other red-pen decorations that are like a tonic to my pre-publication nerves, salvation from slop, and proof that someone has my back.
She will tell you my impatience is ridiculous and a product of my own, over-ambitious schedule for publication. She's right, of course, but that schedule is as much the result of impatience as it is the guilt (the most useless emotion of them all) of blowing through my other self-imposed deadline without a backward glance. I've become used to operating in the vacuum of self-publishing. Every deadline is made up by me, and just like my stories, they're subject to change without notice. This one, though - June 30th - I've carved into stone, for no other reason than this book needs to be published. I said June out loud, and the 30th is the very last day of June that I could get away with.
I didn't consult my editor on that date, of course. I didn't want her to say she couldn't do it. It was too fast. That life didn't stop just because I was impatient. And to her enormous credit, my editor took the giant stack of double-spaced, printed pages I handed her with only a little widening of the eyes, a slightly bigger grimace, and the tiniest of sighs.
Everything else is done. The cover is designed and sized correctly, the ISBN and Library of Congress numbers are in place, the thank you's are written, the publicity pages have been built and are waiting in a file folder for the e-mails that will inform me, two days from now, that Tempting Fate is live. I've done every single thing I can do until the text is completely corrected. And after that it'll be a mad scramble to upload the e-book, then resize and re-margin the pages, clip off the front and back pieces, re-attached the ones that have already been done for the print book, and then upload the whole thing, plus the full cover, for the paperback version.
And then I'll be a toe-tapping, finger-drumming, laundry-folding (huh?), obsessively e-mail-checking, facebook-avoiding mess until I get the notifications that Tempting Fate is alive.
Then, right after I post all the fancy publicity photos announcing book two, I'll be bringing my best bottle of red wine and favorite goat gouda to my editor's house, where we'll sit on her front porch and forgive each other for impatience and practicality. She'll teach me the rules for commas so I don't make as much work for her next time, and I'll set a schedule that works for both of us. Because I don't get to work in a vacuum anymore. My stories have readers - generous, lovely, enthusiastically hungry for more. And I have an editor who helps me give those readers something clean, clear, right, and correct, and who has my back with an ear for story and an eye for detail.
More red-marked pages just arrived.
Good. I've been confusing my children with all this cleaning business, and it's time to get back to work.
Marking Time (The Immortal Descendants Book 1) has just been re-uploaded to Amazon with a sneak peek at Tempting Fate. It's on sale for a limited time for 99 cents. Send it to anyone you know who likes kick-ass heroines and time travel.
Tempting Fate (The Immortal Descendants Book 2) will go live on Monday, June 30th.