Tuesday, June 3, 2014

ESSENCE's Release Day!!!

Photo Courtesy of OakleyOriginals
Today is ESSENCE's Release Day!!! Here are today's blog tour stops:

I truly can't believe this day is finally here. As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be an author. I wanted to be an author before I knew how to read a word, or write a sentence, or turn on a computer, and I worked steadily at this dream for most of my childhood and nearly all of my twenties. 

I failed more times than is reasonably necessary, but I finally found success last summer when Strange Chemistry acquired my debut novel ESSENCE. Today, almost exactly one year later, ESSENCE is being released into the world. 

Wow. This is really happening.

As of today, perfect strangers can now purchase ESSENCE on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. They can read the words I have written, and they can be transported to a world that--up until this point--has mostly only existed in my head.

Wow. This is kind of a big deal, isn't it?

I'm not sure how I expected to feel today. Giddy, I think. Dancing on air. And to an extent, I am. I have a wonderful book signing planned at Inkwood Books in Tampa tonight, and I may even bust out a new dress and do a reading of some sort--all the while surrounded by family, friends and even some perfect strangers.

I'm elated. I really am. But what's interesting is that instead of feeling like I won the lottery, I really feel like I earned this. And that sense of accomplishment is accompanied by a bone-tired weariness that borders on exhaustion.

GETTING A BOOK PUBLISHED WAS SO MUCH HARDER THAN I EXPECTED.

I'm not talking about the obvious hardships--writing the book, finding the literary agent, finding the publisher... Those pursuits were incredibly challenging, and they are certainly worth a mention, but I am more talking about the hardships I didn't expect: the sacrifices, the struggles for validation, the doubts and the second-guessing and the fears and the heartbreaks.

This sounds dramatic, but trust me, it's not. Because the thing about book-writing is, it doesn't exist in a vacuum. When you chose to dedicate yourself to it, you must make sacrifices in other areas of your life.

As many of you already know, I got divorced during the course of this journey. My book certainly wasn't the reason my ex-husband and I decided our lives weren't headed in the same direction, but I would be lying if I told you it wasn't a contributing factor at all.

I wasn't actively writing when my ex-husband met me, and then suddenly I was. It was all I wanted to do sometimes, and he didn't understand nor appreciate how intrinsically connected it was to my soul. He just wondered why I didn't want to spend as much time with him anymore, and his bewilderment over my strange new hobby highlighted a fact that neither of us wanted to admit: we were growing up now, and the fabric of our shared life was slowly unraveling.

My dedication to my writing--and to the travels and adventures that inspire it--has affected me in other ways as well. I have never owned a house or lived in one town longer than three and a half years, post-college. I have never painted a wall or planted a garden, and I have left soulmate friends scattered in every corner of the world. 

I have sacrificed all these things in the pursuit of something I couldn't quite explain, and that something is what has led me to this moment.

It is ESSENCE's Release Day. 

I published a book.

I accomplished that thing I said I was going to accomplish, and if I play my cards right, I may get another Release Day with another project some time in my future. 

But I may not. No matter how much I want to publish another novel, this may just not be in the cards for me. 

So... It's funny to sit here and hold ESSENCE in my hands. It's proof that I have reached my goal, but it's also so much less and so much more than that.

It's just a book. A book you can read in a few days and then go on with your life.

But it's also a love story. To adventure, to independence, to my adolescence, and to people I know and don't know. To that summer in Yosemite that changed nearly everything.

It's a dream. A pledge. A promise I made with myself. 

It's a blood contract and a shackle. The end of one life and the start of a new one. 

It's a heartbreak. A prayer. A song in my head and a light on the horizon.

It's the best and worst thing that has ever happened to me.

It's time to set it free. 

8 comments:

Karen Hooper said...

I feel ya, sister! I have a bit of the same free spirit in me. :)
Congrats on your big day. Can't wait to meet you tonight at your signing! <3

Shallee said...

This is BEAUTIFUL. And YES YOU EARNED IT!! I'm so, so, so excited for you and cannot wait to read your amazing book! Hugs and love and congrats, hon. :D

Tara Dairman said...

Beautifully said, Lisa, and huge congratulations. Enjoy your launch party tonight--you've earned it. And I can't wait to read the rest of Essence!

Carol Riggs said...

Congrats!!! Hard won and delightfully earned. Best wishes for your launch party!! :)

Beth Smith said...

You are amazing and this post is so lovely I just want to reach out and hug you!

I've just purchased ESSENCE and I can't WAIT to read!

Joe Kovacs said...

Lisa, congratulations on this great accomplishment and all that went into it! You deserve all the good feelings that success brings. I just got Essence in the mail two days ago and look forward to reading it. Joe

Beth Ellyn Summer said...

go Lisa!! so thrilled for you! Enjoy every second!

Altha Fidia Oktora said...


Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

Gejala Gejala Penyakit Kanker Yang Sering Di Abaikan
Obat Alami Untuk Menyembuhkan Luka Diabetes
Obat Untuk Penderita Kanker Rahim
Cara Untuk Mencegah Radang Gusi
Cegah Diabetes Dengan Buah Blueberry
Jenis Kandungan Yang Terkandung Di Dalam Bawang Merah
Nutrisi Agar Bayi Cerdas Sejak Ada Di Dalam Kandungan
Hal Yang Bisa Menyebabkan Dan Mendatangkan Sembelit
Obat Herbal Untuk Penyakit Kanker Mulut
Haluskan Kulit Wajah Dengan Bahan Alami Ini