Over the past couple of weeks, early proof copies of Before It’s Too Late have been going out to reviewers. It’s a strange time for me as the author. Even though the book has been through beta readers and edited, those nerves still creep in to see how it will be received when it gets its first taste of the ‘real’ world.
My husband says I felt exactly the same with the other two books. I don’t remember with the second, but I do recall vividly how nervous I was with my first book. Especially as the eBook was released a month early of the official release date and I suddenly received an email in my inbox one day to say, ‘You are published’. The book had gone through all the normal channels, yet when I received this email I could barely breathe wondering what readers would make of it. I suppose that was to be expected. It took me almost two years to write the book and it was my first attempt. But is it normal to continue to feel nerves with each new book?
An author friend recently compared releasing a book to giving birth. I think this is partly true. Much like a mother during pregnancy who tries to eat all the right foods and do all the right things to give her child the best chance; we spend months researching and forming our characters, putting together the storyline, creating those twists and turns, poring over each line during the editing process. By the time we reach the release date, there is nothing more we can do than let it go. But unlike a mother, who nurtures and raises her baby, ours is abandoned into the world.
On reflection, I think these feelings must be healthy. We often hear of actors or comedians feeling nervous before they go on stage. They know their performance, they’ve practised over and over again, yet some of them still suffer from the dreaded stage fright beforehand.
I decided to divert myself by working on a new project. Again, it’s something a little different for me. The idea is very much in its infancy, and I’m still not sure whether it will work, but I’m really enjoying writing the opening scenes and watching it develop. There is something special about a new idea and it’s interesting to see what direction it might take. But it didn’t stop me wondering…
Luckily, I didn’t have to wait too long. Last Friday, the first independent review came in and I’m pleased, and not a little relieved, to say it was positive. You can read it here.
As time progresses, I’m trying not to get too hung up on reviews. Reading and writing is subjective and there will always be some people that don’t enjoy a book for whatever reason. As a reader myself, I understand that. However, that warm glow when a popular reviewer from your genre gives you the thumbs up is rather special. Now I can relax a little and immerse myself in my new project. I wonder where that will take me…
Do you suffer nerves before releasing your work? Or are you a reader wondering what the next book from a particular author will be like? Leave a message here, or contact me on Facebook or Twitter. I’d love to hear your views.