Monday, April 17, 2023

Ten years!


How do I put ten years of stories into a few paragraphs?

I have no idea. When I first started this journey, it was something fun to do because at the time I was unable to find something I wanted to read.  After a conversation with my beloved friend Morgan Jane Mitchell about how she had been writing True Blood Fanfiction for quite some time, I fell down the rabbit hole of self-publishing and then an idea was born. I don’t think if she hadn’t been holding my hand the whole way that I would be celebrating ten years of being a published author.

Believe it or not I began writing a paranormal romance about a drug addicted stripper who fell for a vampire. Ha. That didn’t last long. The story evolved into a contemporary new adult romance that was terrible. It was not edited like at all, and I was just like this is fantastic.

It was utter garbage, and I had no business publishing probably my first ten stories. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. And that dumpster fire of a first book I produced for $13.  The book sold decently well considering how bad it was. I think I managed to debut under the top three hundred on the Amazon eBooks bestseller’s list for that week.  I have no idea why, but I’m grateful that the readers from that time took a chance on me. I kept writing and improving my storytelling. I attempted to work with some editors who also weren’t the greatest, but the book world was so different then. It wasn’t a business for me yet and I was a stay-at-home mom who didn’t want to go back to working fast food or pursuing being a pharmacy tech any further, because it didn’t bring me joy.

Not that work is fun for everyone, but I wanted to work from home and do something that I love.

Writing filled this space in me that I didn’t know I was missing, and once I started there was no stopping me. I finally found something that sparked so much passion in me. For the first time I had this sense of belonging to a community. All through school I struggled to fit in and make true friends outside of a few who I am still close with until this day.  My childhood bestie owns nearly every book I’ve ever written and has copies of some paperbacks I’ve never held.

She has been such a huge supporter and I love her for it because she’s not a dedicated reader, but she reads my books.

With anything there are downsides and I struggled for a while to find my niche. What really called to me to write about.

I’ve had so much encouragement from my fellow authors and readers to keep going on days I thought maybe I wasn’t as cut out for this as I thought. I wanted to give up so many times.

We were struggling financially, and I needed a paying job.

Then I saw this picture on Pinterest. (I get a lot of visual inspiration from there) And this idea for the story Baby came to me. I started planning a motorcycle club romance and I was invited to participate in an anthology that was MC romance based and I needed to write a submission for that. I thought well what better than a prequel to Baby that introduces the club and why she is this spoiled biker brat. Grim The Beginning was born, and I started bringing Black Rebel Riders’ MC to life in early 2014. Then tragedy struck my family and my uncle, Cowboy passed away in a motorcycle accident.

I dropped from the anthology and was unsure if I would continue with the story but then I realized that I owed it to my characters and myself to move forward with the story. My father had belonged to Brothers of The Wheel when I was a child and I thought about my dad and how he would have told me to keep going. That he would have wanted me to keep chasing this dream.  I dedicated that first MC story to some of the people who shaped me with their love of rock ‘n roll and Harley Davidson motorcycles. The editing was again terrible but somehow Grim attracted a readership. And for the first time I tasted some real success and I fell in love with writing gritty alphaholes and never looked back.

I’m still improving on my craft and continue to learn and grow with each new book.

I’ve had so many ups and downs. I’ve made new friends and lost them. I spent years ghostwriting stories for other people until I was earning an income from my books that allowed me to solely focus on my own stories.  I learned so much from the experience that I don’t regret it. I made my peace with those stories never having my name on them so don’t ask or try and figure out if they were published.

I’ve written well over 100 books and hope to write 100 more.

To celebrate my tenth year, I’ve gone back to where I truly fell in love with writing. Back to Grim and the BRRMC. His book is getting some much needed love and edits. I’ll be publishing the special edition hardback soon, so be on the lookout.

The ebook and paperback versions will be updated with the new edits soon. Here is the front cover for the hardback.

Happy reading!