Unfortunately, patience is not a virtue with which I’ve been blessed. I have mellowed some over the years but I still have a long, long way to go. That is quite obvious to me at this moment, especially.
Today was supposed to be a day of Celebration!
One I had been dreaming about for 12 years as I slaved away at my computer, pouring out my heart onto page after page. One I’d envision every time I got yet another rejection letter from an agent to keep me motivated. One I’ve been counting down the days to for months.
It was supposed to be the release day for my debut novel, Bits & Pieces.
But, it’s not. And I must admit, I’m devastated. I cried many tears yesterday when I realized today wasn’t going to be the day. I took a long nap today and truly would’ve been content to stay in bed all day, feeling sorry for myself.
But, I’m not.
Instead I’m going to do what I’ve learned to do after years of suffering with a chronic illness. In fact, this whole process has shown me that having a chronic illness is very similar to the process of getting published. Both require me giving up control. I’ve had to accept the fact that because of my auto-immune disease, I often have no control over many things. My pain or energy levels. My ability to follow-through on my plans or commitments. My day-to-day routine. Spending time with the people I love.
With writing, it’s the same. I’ve done my part on Bits & Pieces. I’ve written it. I’ve re-written it. I’ve edited it over and over again. I’ve read through it what feels like 8 million times trying to find every mistake. I’ve taken care of everything within my control.
But, guess what? Life happens and it has a way of interfering with the things we think we have under control.
My book is SO close to being ready and my publisher has worked hard with me to try to get it out by October 30th as we both announced. But, it still has some formatting issues that need fixed before I’m comfortable sending it out into the world. I want the reader to be able to entirely focus on Tessa’s journey, not errors with formatting.
In addition, one of the members of the Ant Colony Press staff (which is a very small team to start with) lost her father yesterday. Which makes my tears over having to delay my release seem petty and a bit unimportant in the grand scheme of things.
There’s a lot of freedom working with a small publisher in terms of having a voice in the whole process. But, there are drawbacks as well — there are less people to pick up the slack when hard things happen. When life interferes with our best laid plans.
So, today, I’m going to drink lots of coffee. I’m going to stop feeling sorry for myself and read through Bits & Pieces again. I’m going to send out the list of formatting errors I find to my publisher so that when it gets to the reader, it is as perfect as it can be. I’m going to offer prayers for the Ant Colony staff members who are grieving right now. I’m going to use this time to practice a skill I have not yet mastered — being patient.
Bits & Pieces will be out into the world VERY SOON. I will make sure to keep everyone updated here and on social media. I don’t have an exact date at this point which is hard, but I’ve done hard things before. In fact, living with Crohn’s disease, I often do hard things daily.
Thank you to everyone who has offered support, love and encouragement over the past 24 hours knowing how hard this has been for me. Try to practice patience with me as we wait for my release.