In December, 2011, I published my first book, Fearless. The next year, I published two more books, and in 2013, I released three full books and one short. In 2014, I’d written and published two books and was writing a third when I attended Romantic Times convention, where authors were told to publish faster and more often.
Clearly, I took that to heart. I released three more full books in 2014 after RT, and then in 2015, I published 7 books, and then 8 in 2016. In between, I also released shorts, box sets and other smaller books.
Earlier this year, I set out my release plans for 2017 and 2018. When my husband’s position at the church was eliminated in January, I added 6 more novellas to the plan, which means that between January and June, I wrote and released 12 books.
In case you don’t know, that’s a whole lot of books.
And as I worked on this last one, Fifty Frogs, I realized something. I’m tired. I’m exhausted, in fact. I’m not burned out on writing or the business, but I’m seeing that could be possible if I don’t do something now.
So in the middle of that book, I made the decision that this will be my last planned book for 2017. I can’t tell you how much relief this decision brought me. I’ve been telling people that I began to feel like a kid on the brink of summer vacation after a school term that had lasted three years.
I’m not quitting the business–not by a long stretch. I’m planning to work on polishing and rebranding my backlist, so those 50+ books can work for me. I’m planning to write a few shorts here and there, and perhaps–just perhaps–write and publish the next Keeping Score book some time this fall. But I’m not committing to a date, and I’m keeping everything fluid.
All the books on my release list will come out, but they will come out more slowly.
Most of you know that I have four kids. My oldest is married; she works as a speech pathologist at an elementary school, and I volunteer there once a week. I want to keep doing that. My next daughter is 25 and in the midst of some life changes, and I want to be there for her. The next daughter is about to leave home to finish her college career at a school in Maine, and I want to spend time with her this summer, enjoy helping her get ready to move and not have to be anxious about driving her north in August. My son is 16 and about to begin his senior year of homeschooling. I need to be more present for him now.
And then there’s my husband, who is endlessly patient and tolerant of my wacky hours. I want to help him as he launches his new ministry.
I also need to continue to support my family, so as I said, I’ll still be working on my backlist. But I hope the easing of pressure will help me see things more clearly. This business is not easy, although I love it. The pressures are subtle but undeniable. I need to ease back and see how I can make my life work with the business.
My Temptresses heard this announcement last week, and their response was overwhelmingly positive. I love them for that!
I hope you’ll understand, too. I hope you’ll stick with me and support the rebrandings, the promotions and the shorts coming out, and I hope you’ll be around when the books begin releasing again.
Meanwhile, I covet your good wishes and your prayers for our family, as we transition and adjust and keep on keeping on. If you want more insight into what’s going on with us, check out my husband’s new ministry at The Community Chaplain and my spiritual musings at A Pen and A Prayer.
And stay tuned! Good stuff’s coming. <3