Secrets, Pressure, and Diamonds

Wow, I just realized this is my 400th blog post!  That is a LOT of blog posts, but...

I've been quiet lately.

I don't have to say it really.  You've seen very scant blog posts from me recently.  You haven't heard a lot from me on Facebook.  I've never been real great about using Twitter.  It seems I've gone into a bit of a social media hibernation lately.

But it is for good reason.

I just can't tell you what it is.

I know I'm being mean and not telling you what I'm working on.  But honestly I just really can't say anything about it yet.  And I'm sad to say that it will probably still be a few months before I can say anything about what I'm working on.

Sorry guys.  I know it's mean.  But it is for the best right now.

But I wanted to talk about something else today.

PRESSURE



I feel it these days.  In a major way.  And in many ways.

I'm feeling a little stressed out because I don't feel like I've been quite as productive as I'd like to be, or as I used to be.  You guys know my track record is to release a new book every 5-9 months.  Now, WHAT I DIDN'T SAY only came out 2 months ago, so I'm starting to think about what is coming up.  I tend to get caught up in the "get more out NOW!" panic.

I remember reading on Amanda Hocking's blog once about understanding how people become work-a-holics.  She said that you feel like you can't stop to take a breath, because you feel like if you do, all your hard work will unravel faster than you can put it back together.

I totally get that now.

After a LOT of hard work, I've gotten to a really great place with my writing.  I have an established readership, amazing, loyal readers.  I've sold a lot of books.  But it's hard to relax and just enjoy it.  I get caught up into feeling like I constantly have to produce.  Because I kind of have to.  I have to keep putting books out there to keep moving books.

Pressure...

And there is the pressure to constantly be better.  This market is competitive.  You have to keep producing something that will knock your readers socks off.  You have to write something insanely unique.  Your writing can't be weak for one second.

Pressure...

There is pressure to go beyond your writing.  It seems these days that writing is only half the game.  Because along with it you have to do all the blogging, tweeting, facebooking, interviewing, marketing, etc...  There is an endless amount of work you can do in addition to writing.

But this post isn't meant to be a total downer.

While pressure is stressful, I like having pressure.

Pressure keeps me on track.  I'm grateful for all you readers out there breathing down my neck to get the next book out.  It means that I HAVE to get another book out.  It drives me to get those words out and my red pen flying.

Pressure drives me to figure out different marketing techniques.  It makes me be more creative in drawing people in.

Pressure makes me work harder.

Pressure made me grow into a better person.  I couldn't deal with everything I have to deal with these days three years ago.  I couldn't have kept up with all the emails, all the research, all the marketing.  Add to that fact that I have a 4 and 2 year old.  I couldn't have dealt with all of my every day stress.  Because over time, I've had new layers of pressure laid down on me.  And over time it's made me more and more capable of handling everything that's being thrown on my shoulders (even if it's me that's throwing it on my shoulders).

“When we long for life without difficulties, 
remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and 
diamonds are made under pressure” 
-Peter Marshall

60 comments:

Jenni Merritt said...

The pressure has definitely served to make you quite an authorly power house that I can't help but look up to!

Keep being awesome, but don't forget to take a much deserved breather here and there. :)

Catherine Stine said...

Yes, I relate. I feel under pressure to finish a draft of my sequel to Fireseed One! Good luck on your secret project. :)
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