Life can get complicated and take unexpected turns. Earlier this week, I opened my email to find releases on all the contracts I had with one particular publisher. Over the past three years as I’ve built my backlist and career as an author, I grew along with this publisher. Did I outgrow them? I think but it would seem perhaps they thought they outgrew me! Being a lady and not prone to gossip, I’d rather not name it. If you’re a fan or follower, you probably already know or can figure it out. Let’s just say I’m still publishing with Astraea Press, Evernight Publishing, and Champagne Books. I have new releases upcoming in the near future with both Astraea Press and Evernight Publishing. I am also already launched onto the seas of indie publishing with my first effort, also out this week, a short called Will’s Way.
At this moment, I’m not really sure why the publisher opted to give me all my titles back. Something was mentioned about not wanting to hold me back or keep me from reaching goals. Somehow that’s a little hard for me to understand. Within hours of being notified, my backlist dropped from over forty titles to about twenty. Sadly, I’m not alone either but their apparent direction and mine diverted into diverse directions.
There are two ways to take news like this. You can kick, scream, curl up into a ball and weep. You can let it defeat you or define you. I choose the latter. To be honest, I was already unhappy with a few things about said publisher and my venture into indie publishing is something I’ve dreamed about for a long time. I happen to also have great affection for the other publishers, the ones with new releases upcoming. They have both done me very well, always honest and professional.
So I choose to let this experience define me. I will use it to triumph, not mourn a tragedy. It’s for the best, a new beginning and the start of a new era. 2014 will be my year. I’m going to own it and reach soaring new heights along with some of my friends. Some of my favorite authors are starting new projects too and one very good friend has launched his own company, Toby By Design. You’ll find a link here on the blog and I can promise if you want affordable, cutting edge covers or other projects, you will find it here.
With that, here’s a blurb and links for my indie effort, a very poignant love story called Will’s Way:
When Marine Will Nichols returned from Afghanistan with some serious scars, he retreated from almost everything and everyone. His late night radio talk show is the one place no one can judge him by his appearance but he lives lonely. One of his regular callers, however, Samantha Callahan, manages to catch both his fancy and affection. No matter how he feels, though, he refuses to meet her because he fears she’ll reject him. But stubborn Samantha doesn’t give up easily and cares enough to take a chance because where there’s Will, there’s a way.
When he walked into the studio, Taylor rolled his eyes. “Welcome back,” he said in a martini-dry voice.
“What’re you talking about?” Will said. He made an effort to keep it light and smart-ass. “I haven’t been anywhere.”
“Back to the land of the living,” Taylor said. “Man, I don’t know what drama you got going in your life but I hope you get your shit together. If you want her, tell her, dude.”
Being sober might be overrated because Will’s befuddled brain didn’t grasp Taylor’s meaning. “Want who?”
“The girl, oh, hell, what’s her name, Susanna, Serena, wait, no, her name’s Samantha like that witch chick on the old TV show.”
“You know her?” Will was dumbfounded at the idea.
Taylor rolled his eyes. “Hell, no, man. She called the studio a bunch of times, looking for you. We chatted and that’s it. But if you’re worried she’s not into you, she is, man, big time.”
Where the hell was the god of wine, Bacchus, when you needed him? One damn drink might help him to think straight. “I’ve never met her.”
“Maybe you should, then. Five minutes and it’s all yours.” Taylor opened the mic and introduced his last song.
Will stared. “Don’t be an asshole. I can’t meet her.”
“Dude, I look like a freak show in case you haven’t noticed,” Will told him. “I’m like a cross between Bozo the fuckin’ clown and Quasimodo or the Phantom of the Opera or maybe the Elephant Man. She’ll scream or puke or both, then run like hell and I can’t blame her.”
Taylor shrugged. “Whatever. It’s your deal, man. I’m outta here in a few minutes.”
Will began his show, his wavering reflection in the glass dividing his studio from the commercial production room visible. He glared at it and squelched an urge to shatter the glass. Taylor meant well but he didn’t understand. No fucking body did. Focus, man, focus. He had a show to do.
“It’s midnight,” he said. “So let’s get this show on the road. We’re taking callers tonight, talking about almost anything with some tunes in between to fill the spaces in my head and yours. Before you light up my lines, though, I wanna tell you what happened to me today. I was the victim of a drive-by cleaning. Yeah, cleaning, folks. Some wonderful person came into my place last night and scrubbed it till everything shines. I haven’t lived someplace this clean since I left the Marines. She knows who she is and she might be listening. I hope she is because I want to say ‘thanks’. She’s an awesome lady and that’s all I’m sayin’. Go ahead, talk to me, you’re on the air.”
A voice he didn’t know said, “Maybe Cinderella makes house calls.”