“When it gets too tough for the rest of them, it’s just right for me!”
I was sitting here in my office the other day feeling sorry for myself because I haven’t become a bestselling author after busting my butt writing three books (Evil in the Mirror, Day Stalker and The Phoenix Code), working on a fourth, editing, proofing, maintaining blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Websites, and scores of book signings for five years. What the hell do I have to do to get noticed?
No doubt if I had a million dollars to spend on promotions I would already be famous and raking in the big bucks. There is also no doubt that if I had that kind of money, I would be a bestselling author and you could find me drinking cool ones on a beach in Costa Rica while eating lobster! Therein lays the rub.
For most of my adult life I abused alcohol and managed to get divorced more than twice (enough said). I lived in the fast lane and pulled out of the dive in 1990 just before crashing into the gutter. Even though I made a good living working construction, the industry only promoted working hard and playing even harder.
I managed to quit drinking, educate myself to the college level and become a project manager for a large company in Saginaw, Michigan. I also managed to marry a wonderful woman who was a non-drinker and taught me that sober fun in life was the best life one could ask for. I learned that working did not have to mean drinking with the guys. I could socialize with clients without boozing it up and wake up the next morning not knowing what I did the night before.
When my wife was able to retire from Dow Chemical in 2000, we moved to my home state, Arizona. The economic bust of 2009 gave me the opportunity to write. Construction was D.O.A. and still is, but I worked harder than anything construction could throw at me writing three murder mysteries. I don’t think there is a more difficult industry to break into than being an author. But, then again – I never tried to be an actor.
The last five years have been hard, but I never gave up the goal of becoming a “bestselling” author. All the time I had one thing in the back of my mind that bugged me. What if I did succeed and couldn’t handle the fame which would include cocktail parties, large book signings and travel? Would I be able to stay sober after all these years having my wife at my side to make sure I didn’t screw up, or would success spoil the whole thing? To me, this question is serious and perhaps may be the reason it is not meant for me to be a famous author. After all, I have accomplished something few people can boast about. Three published novels is nothing to scoff at and I should be content with reaching the goal of being a published author. Who am I kidding? I won’t rest until I become a bestselling author or die trying!