Friday, May 29, 2015

Ten-Year Bookiversary

I had another late start this morning thanks to a constant stream of flash flood warnings setting off the weather radio throughout the night, every one hitting just as I fell back asleep after the previous one (argh). But now that I'm seeing just how bad it was, I can kind of understand the urgency. They were having to do high-water rescues using boats on city streets, and on one highway, they were having to use heavy equipment to break through the median divider so trapped cars could get out. We've now broken the record for wettest May since they started keeping records. I saw a statistic that said the amount of rain the state of Texas has had this month would cover the entire state 8 inches deep -- 7 feet if it were snow.

But supposedly we have three whole days in the forecast with no rain coming next week. I normally like rain. I'm just not into flooding and deluges.

In non weather-related news, I have a big anniversary coming up. This Sunday, it will have been ten years since the original Enchanted, Inc. book was published. I suppose around ten years ago today it was starting to show up in some stores. I was already getting e-mails about it. It's hard to believe it's been that long. The book is still in print and going strong, and often has the highest Amazon ranking of all my books. People are still discovering it even now. If all the copies that have sold in the past ten years had sold in one week, it would have been a bestseller. It's probably outsold in total copies some of the books that were bestsellers at the time, many of which are no longer in print. But since those copies sold over ten years and the bestseller thing is what publishers and bookstores value, it's only considered a modest success and the publisher doesn't want more books from me.

That's okay. I'm making a good living doing what I love, which I have to keep reminding myself when I get discouraged. I ended up writing more in that series than I planned. Those books have been published around the world. The first book was optioned for film and a screenplay was even written, though they let the option lapse (I got to keep the money). There was an effort to get it made into a TV series that didn't pan out but that involved some people in the industry I admire (and they really, really got the concept). The series finally came out in audio last year and was a huge success there.

Am I where I thought I'd be ten years ago? To be honest, not really. I felt like I had a really special book that would catch on and lead to great things, and it didn't quite work out that way. I've never been able to coast. Ten years on, and I haven't been nominated for awards, haven't been invited as a special guest to any conventions (the kind where they pay for your travel and use your name in the promotion), still get the "we'll  have to see" about getting on programming at WorldCon. I haven't been given a big promotional push by a publisher that could make me a bestseller, haven't been sent to BEA or ComicCon, or anything like that. No banners, bus shelter posters, or magazine ads.

But you know, that's all ego stuff. I'm making more money than I probably would have been if I'd stayed in my day job career (though there were some lean years in between). I'm doing something I love that I would be doing for fun even without getting paid (though perhaps not doing as much of it). I'd probably have to take a pay cut to go back to a day job career, so it would be silly to quit because I'm discouraged about not getting any recognition.

So I will rejoice in having a book that's been in print for ten years, that's still selling and finding new fans, that's introduced me to all kinds of interesting people and made so many things possible.

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