If I was a drinker, I would raise a glass of champagne in a special toast to all my amazing friends and thank them for their support. But since I’m not, you get a blog post dedicated to you instead…A million thank you’s to all my wonderful friends! You are amazing and I couldn’t do this without you.
In the past week I have met with three book groups between Oregon and Washington organized by great friends. Months ago when I asked anyone if they were interested in doing something like that, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. It wasn’t because I didn’t think my friends were willing to help me, more that I couldn’t imagine enough interest in my writing. I’ve quickly learned that my imagination is sorely lacking. I am overwhelmed by the response I have received from so many. I have met lots of terrific people, made new friends, and had a blast doing it. I’ve also learned a great deal.
Most importantly I’ve learned I’m not alone in this. When I set out to write a book I really kept it to myself. Aside from a few friends and my family, I didn’t tell very many people about it. I think I was afraid people would criticize, maybe not to my face, but let’s face it, how many people have dreamed of writing a book only to never actually do it. And how many more have started one and never finished? Probably even more. Even when I learned I was going to be published I wasn’t comfortable talking about it for fear of criticism. But this experience has shown me that people are far less likely to criticize and more likely to support you in your endeavors if you give them a chance. Sure there are the occasional sour grapes in the bunch, but most of them are sweet. In fact, I can honestly say everyone I’ve encountered has been amazing, offering encouragement and applauding me onward. They are as anxious for my success as I am and are helping me achieve it. I’m also learning to talk about myself. I have issues with recognition, but I’m getting better at accepting it gracefully. It’s hard to answer questions about yourself, especially when you’ve never thought about them before. Talking to people about my experience, my writing process, my character ideas and more has forced me to look inward and really hammer out those responses. I know myself better now than I ever have.
Thanks again to all my friends, family and readers. You make it all worthwhile!