Friday, August 30, 2013

25 Things I Know For Sure About Writing and/or Life

By Saralee Rosenberg

This year marks my twenty-fifth anniversary as an author and I'm happy to report that the silver hasn't yet tarnished. Eight of my books have been published, (four novels and four non-fiction titles), and my new work-in-progress is a departure for me- a novel for younger readers called THE MIDDLE SCHOOL MEDIUM.

Indeed, one of the first rules of publishing fiction is to reinvent yourself or die! The second rule is to avoid exclamation points!!!!!!!!!

In honor of my two and a half decades in the trenches, here are twenty- five things I know for sure about writing and/or life. 

1.     Readers, reviewers, agents and editors are idiots unless, of course, they love what you wrote. Just kidding. They may not get you but they know what they like so listen and learn.

2.     Read how-to guides and blogs, take classes and spend the summer in Iowa. But at some point just write the damn book.

 3.     If you breathe life into your characters, by page 50 you'll hear the natal heart beat. And that is the point they are big and strong enough to take the story in the direction you had no idea you were going.

4.     If your characters are not leading the way by page 50, you made a wrong turn.

5.     When nothing is going right, go left.

6.     Input and feedback matter, but not too soon. The rush for accolades and encouragement can destroy potentially great ideas before they've had time to percolate. Resist the temptation to ask for comments until you're on solid ground.

7.     Input and feedback matter, but only from the right people. Those with an agenda or who like/love you too much to be brutally honest are doing you no favors. You only need a few trustworthy, gentle readers to keep you in check.

8.     Admire other writers but don't aspire to be them. We don't need Richard Russo light.  Aspire instead to bring yourself to the party. We'd love to hear YOUR voice.

9.     Just when your story feels like it's falling apart it may actually be falling into place.

10. Have faith.

11.  You can't edit what you didn't write.

12.  The Internet is a time suck. You show me a writer who is jumping between Facebook and a manuscript and I'll show you a writer who is writing crap.

13.  Yes, yes. Crap sells. That doesn't mean you have to contribute to the shlock pile. Give us your absolute best work.

14. Enjoy elation when it occurs. Whether it's finishing a book, getting an agent, an advance, a deal, a great review, an award, an interview, making the best-seller list or just hearing from a reader who sings your praises, take time to be excited. You get nothing in writing that guarantees it will ever happen again.

15.  Take criticism but not disrespect. Anyone who is rude, dismissive or mean spirited is not worthy of your time and talent.

16. If someone turns you down, move on. Every door that closes brings you one step closer to the door that was meant to open.

17. Follow your instincts and trust that your ideas are coming from a higher place. A place that honors you.

18. Write daring. Your job is to disturb the Universe.

19. Care a great deal about your well being and that of your characters.

20. Dont waste time worrying about something that has not yet happened. There is a no-refund policy on time spent dwelling on the future. Worry only when a problem has presented itself and only if fixing the problem is within your power.

21. There are no such things as problems. Only opportunities to do things differently.

22. If you are writing to dazzle and impress then you should become a speech writer. Novelists will better serve their readers by telling stories that matter.

23.  Pushing to write a certain number of pages per day is like committing to driving a certain number of miles on a long road trip. You may arrive but you'll have missed the great scenery and possibly the turns that you should have taken.

24. Thank everyone you meet for whatever service, friendship or act of kindness they show you. This has nothing to do with writing, but an attitude of gratitude will lighten your load.

25. No matter what, if your blessings outweigh your burdens consider yourself among the very luckiest.

So that's it from the trenches. Happy writing. Oh and dream big! I did and it brought me to you.

Saralee Rosenberg

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Trying Something New...

As many of you know, My Bombay books came out in 2007, published by a traditional New York publisher. They did okay and I did four total.

In 2011, I got the rights back to these books and self-published them to much better success. Enough for me to quit the day job.  Still, after two years, sales started to fade a bit and I started getting frustrated with making covers, massaging categories, etc.

The Bombays have just entered into life - hybrid publishing. Gemma Halliday started up a boutique publishing company. She takes care of cover design, copy and major editing, formatting, pricing, category management, etc. And I think I was her first author.

Gemma repackaged the series and re-launched them in June, and gave them a whole new life. She's a wizard - I don't know how she does it but she found new readers!  And then we launched SNUFF THE MAGIC DRAGON: & Other Bombay Bedtime Stories in July and it did very well.

With Gemma handling everything, my writing output has tripled. I have another Bombay collection coming out in fall and am hoping to have a new novel by the end of the year. I feel as if a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders!

Yes, she's getting a percentage - but it's far more competitive than any of the BIG 5. AND, Gemma understands the system. She totally gets how the algorithms work at BN and Amazon. AND she got me a pre-order button for Amazon.

What I find so interesting about this is that Gemma started out a NY trad pubbed author. She went into self-publishing, and she learned more in one year than NY has learned in 30. I'm impressed by that, and I think there's something to be learned here.

For now, I'm thrilled to be part of Gemma's stable of authors. I don't have to write proposals and she doesn't worry that something won't be 'marketable' enough. She has faith in her authors or she wouldn't have signed us.

And that may be the biggest lesson NY could ever learn. I wonder if they will...

Leslie Langtry

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

My Fifteen Seconds of Fame

Five Non-financial Rewards of Publication

by Cindy Jones

It took me seven years to reach the point where my work attracted the attention of an agent, and another seven to get from the agent to the publisher who finally cut the advance check. Spread over fourteen years, the proceeds of my writing career have been sufficient to feed one goldfish once a day. Obviously, I am not in it for the money. The secret, I am convinced, is to write faster.  But until I get up to speed, I make a point of enjoying the many non-financial rewards of published life. Instead of getting paid:

  1. You get to remark in casual conversation things like, “My editor thinks, or “My publicist says.” Just having a publicist took ten years off my life--in a good way. When she, who actually lives and works in Manhattan, told me my marketing idea was brilliant, I knew the rest of my life would be downhill.

  2. You get to play God to an audience. All writers get to make it rain or snow, decide what day of the week it is, and kill people with the click of a mouse. But published writers get to do it in public, commanding the time, attention, and emotions of a global audience. How heady to think that a character conceived during a daydream while driving my son to an orthodontist appointment lives in the hearts and minds of the reading public!

  3. Free therapy. The writing process allows a writer deep exploration into the issues they are thinking about.  Questions are considered from many angles and years spent exploring those questions will ultimately result in answers.  You get all this without a co-pay or pesky office visits.

  4. You get validation from an authority. You know you’ve crossed a line when a publishing icon worth billions in assets thinks your work is good enough to be published.  Advances will go the way of all funds and sales come and go, but your ISBN number lasts forever.

  5. You get 15 minutes of fame. Of course it goes to your head. In my personal life after publication, I expected groceries to be delivered, teeth flossing to be outsourced, and immediate ascension into a social A-list--in my case: the Super Moms of Carpool Line Society. I was sure that after publication I would no longer be the slightly ditzy mom who shows up last minute, breathless, in exercise clothes with mascara smears and an excuse. Finally, I would be appreciated.  Imagine my elation when a Super Mom said, “You wrote that book!” I smiled big and admitted that, yes, I did write that book. Super Mom put a hand out to stop someone who wanted her attention, allowing me to speak. But there was nothing else to say, and in the akward gap, my writing attire and mascara smears asserted themselves as the essence of me: a dual citizen of earth and outer space. Induction to the Super Society lost its appeal. Even if they would have me--what would I do there??

As I close in on my second novel I enjoy the free therapy and my ISBN, and no longer dream of a sock folding department or a different me.  But most importantly, freedom from the distraction of my expired 15 seconds of fame leaves me far more able to focus on what really matters: speed writing.

Cindy Jones is the author of My Jane Austen Summer as well as work-in-progress about look-alike friends who trade places while under dangerous influence of Romantic Poets.  Follow:    

What happens when you don't do what you were meant to do?

Perhaps if I wore a latex bikini and waved an oversized foam finger with one hand while I tapped on the keyboard with the other. . .I could make money as a writer. The first two seemed to work for Miley Cyrus.  And she probably didn't have a clue that twerking became popular while she was still in diapers.

I seem to have a knack for choosing creative pursuits that aren’t lucrative…like teaching high school, bagel-dipping in Nutella, and writing.  Maybe I should have actually read the book  Do What You Love, The Money will Follow. But since I’d already discovered outlets that “fulfilled my needs, talents and passions,” I didn’t require direction, just affirmation, so I didn’t read more than the title.

Maybe I could write Fifty Shades of Blue Because I Didn’t Think of Fifty Shades of Gray Before She Did. Or The Sun Before Twilight.  Or a prequel to the Harry Potter series. But that would be as successful as my attempting to twerk on-stage with Robin Thicke.

As all my girlfriends in writing shared the past few posts, back away from your laptop if you’re pursuing fame and fortune as an author.  I’ve experienced the wiggling excitement of being offered representation by agents, book contracts, seeing my name on the cover of a novel, finding myself in a bookstore and on Amazon. Yet I’ve probably spent more in marketing, classes, and conferences than I’ve earned.

So, why do I continue to write?

Because I can’t not write, and that’s never been so clear to me as it has the past five weeks.  I’d been officially retired for five months when my husband decided to open his own business. He’s a veterinarian. This is what I do while I’m at work: I smile and say, “Hold on” and/or  “I’ll find someone who can help you.”  I’m entering inventory and clients in our database, shelving drugs with unpronounceable names, counting pills for prescriptions, mopping the floors every morning so the clinic won’t smell like the population it serves, answering the phone, leaving the house every morning at 6:30 and not returning home until after 7:00, working every Saturday and going in on Sundays to catch up from the week.

My consumption of Blue Bell ice cream is increasing in an inverse proportion to my hours of sleep and direct proportion to my depression. I went to bed at 7:30 last night and woke up at 4:00 to write this post.  It’s the first writing I’ve attempted outside of  “free exams to new clients” in over thirty days. 

When your passion is suddenly taken hostage, you eventually find a way to survive. To entertain it in your mind where it can’t be constrained. I mop and spin ideas of women once wealthy and powerful who assume false identities and hide out in low-end jobs to escape someone or something. I devise stories around clients who own ten dogs and/or cats, I name future characters after some of the clients’ pets. . . I try to not dwell in the land of, “if I’d written a blockbuster before this, I wouldn’t be wiping up unknown glick on the floor.”

I hope to be ransomed one day. In the meantime, I’m following the advice of my writer friends and keeping a journal. Maybe the glick on the floor will lead to a  break-out book. Maybe not.  But this I’ve learned: you can’t sacrifice your passion on the altar of someone else’s dreams.

Do what you love. If the money doesn’t follow, your sanity will.

When Christa isn't writing about herself in third person and ordering pet supplies, she's looking forward to the publication of A Test of Faith, her fifth novel, and anxiously awaiting the debut of her new website after her hosting company went out of business without letting her know and, thus, losing all she had.

Monday, August 26, 2013

For Love or Money

by Marilyn Brant

I have this daily quote calendar on my desk, and the saying that popped up a few days ago was this: "Something is only work if you would rather be doing something else."

I agree with that to a certain degree. As tough as writing a novel (or a poem or a short story or even a blog post...) can be some days, I rarely wish I were doing something else. Well, sometimes I wish I were watching more episodes of "Under the Dome" with that handsome Mike Vogel or reading Jane Austen yet again, LOL. But, for the most part, I love writing. The whole messy process of it. The crazy puzzle that we need to solve in order to create a story, draft it, edit it (repeatedly!) and, eventually, bring it into the world. I get a strange energy from it and -- as an introvert -- anything that gives me energy, rather than drains me of it, is always a good thing.

But, I haven't always had an income from writing (or I had one, technically, but it wasn't large enough to so much as cover the monthly phone bill), so there were jobs I needed to do to help pay for our family's expenses. My plan was to find jobs that would not only bring in an income but would also build my writing skills and understanding of stories. That way, I figured, it wouldn't just be "work," it would be "experience."

When I first started writing fiction, I'd just left my teaching position to be a stay-at-home mom to a little baby boy, so, initially, my work was all in the house -- taking care of him and our rented apartment and handling all of our finances while my husband, who's a high school teacher, worked at the school full time and provided us with necessities like food and insurance. When our son started elementary school, though, I wanted to contribute more directly and, yet, still be able to be home when our son got back from his classes. So, I expanded on the the freelance writing I'd begun to do while my son was a baby, and queried more magazines, hoping to write for a few of them in subjects that fascinated me -- like music, the arts, travel and, of course, parenting. I got regular assignments from a handful of publications, some regional, some national, and I also became a part-time book reviewer for a large-circulation magazine.

Not surprisingly, although this was all very enjoyable work, it wasn't much more lucrative than fiction writing, which had netted me exactly $500 when I won first place in short-story contest. (And, let me tell you, that was a BIG deal for me then!) My pre-motherhood profession would have required me to be away from home too much, so I thought about what I could do within the realm of literature that might pay a bit more and still be as interesting to me as writing. I was fortunate to find a part-time position at a library, and I worked there for 3 1/2 years -- learning about how librarians chose the women's fiction and romance books in their collection and which popular novels really got patrons excited and talking. When I finally got my first book contract, I couldn't believe my debut novel would be one of the ones on their shelves. I still get a thrill when I see my set of women's fiction books in the stacks or spot the electronic reference pages that they have for my ebooks. There's no price that can be put on that feeling.

With the tidal wave of changes in the publishing industry, I've become a hybrid author, involved with both traditional and self-published novels...and my "baby boy" just became a high schooler. I've needed to learn more in recent years about marketing and promotion than ever before, and I can't say that the advertising aspect of the profession is my favorite part -- my favorite is still the writing. It always will be. But promo and social media have their gifts, too. I've met more people who share common loves (like Mike Vogel and Jane Austen ;) on Facebook, Twitter and blogs like this one than I ever would have imagined. It's helped to make the writing experience one of both love and (at least some) money...

**BTW, for readers interested in money-saving deal -- my three-book romantic comedy boxed set, The Sweet Temptations Collection, is on SUPER SALE for just a few days this week!! The digital collection is only $0.99 (reg. price $8.99) on both B&N and Amazon right now to celebrate the end of summer. Please pick up a copy and spread the word!!**

Friday, August 23, 2013

Yes, you CAN* make money writing!

by Malena Lott

I make good money writing.

Caveat: only a fraction of that income comes from writing books.

Caveat 2: I live in Oklahoma where cost of living is low, so Yay!

I write ad copy, marketing materials, and brand strategy. Coming up with creative ideas for companies can be lucrative. While some literary purists might think writing advertising is "selling out" I saw early on that could be a way I could use my writing skills *and* give myself time to work on my "great American novel."

While I worked in radio, TV and corporations in my 20s, I started a branding firm with a business partner when I was 28 so I could have flexible hours, be a good (sane) mama to my kids. My agent did eventually sell that first novel for a modest advance. Then she sold  my second novel for a better, yet still modest, advance. Then...nothing. Which is kind of crazy since I knew my writing was getting better with each book. Go fig.

My agent finally said I should self-publish a title we both loved. That was Fixer Upper which went on Amazon and Smashwords in 2010. Sales...trickled. I was bummed. But I kept writing. I started Buzz Books USA in February 2011 to publish other people's work, too, because I figured I could combine my passion for marketing and stories all in one. I knew it would take about three years to "grow it up." I pubbed "Life's a Beach" that summer. It sold better than my first, and it was a novella, so it took less time to write. With a catchy title and cover and premise "Law of Attraction and karma meet on the beach" sales started picking up and for two years it was my best-selling digital title. (Now it's Fixer Upper.)

I got my rights back on that first novel, The Stork Reality, and after a year, sales are picking up on it. I wrote a follow-up to Life's a Beach that included characters from all my novels to answer my readers who wanted to know...whatever happened to... in The Last Resort. I include links to my books in the back of each novel. Some people must click on them! And algorithms are a very real thing which I don't understand that much, but love when it works in my favor.

This much I do know: one book does sell another. If they liked one, they will likely buy another. If they didn't like one, they still might give another book a chance. (Readers are awesome that way.)

Because I never stopped writing - even when I doubted myself! - I had a nice backlog of stories including a young adult novel, which became Twin Falls, and two more women's fiction novels, Something New and my latest, Family Charms. My readers are saying with each release they are stronger, which give me the momentum to keep going. Books are cross-selling each other and I love promoting the authors at Buzz.

What's the lesson here? The "takeaway"? Never. Stop. Writing. Build your community, engage with readers and keep believing. Does it take some luck? Yep. I pulled the two Smashwords titles and put them on nook myself two weeks ago and guess what? Fixer Upper was plucked from their database and mentioned in their daily newsletter and sales skyrocketed for a few days and I started seeing a slight uptick in other titles. Then, the wave receded. That's what awareness is. It comes, then it goes away, but over time, people remember. 

Another key to mentally surviving this "side career" - stop comparing yourself to other writers, whether they are tradtionally-pubbed or self-pubbed. I personally know three indie-pubbed authors who quit their day jobs and make buckets of money off their many ebooks. That's a tiny percentage of the authors sphere, but still, don't compare! You'll drive yourself nuts and that could keep you from writing your best work.

Keep going. And good luck. If you believe in it and work hard, you can make some money from writing. How much is up to you and that whole "preparation meeting opportunity" thing.


When Malena isn't writing, she's marketing and mothering. She's a Cub Scout mom, dance mom and mom of a new driver. She blogs about zen, creativity and mojo at 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Five Guaranteed Ways To Make Money As An Author By Ariella Papa

I LOL’d for real when I saw the topic of this cycle on this blog. I’m sure a lot of my Girlfriends did too. The topic was “Making Money as an Author” and after my belly laugh I had a moment where I thought, “Is that even possible?”
I kid, I kid. I’ve made money as an author, but the idea that someone can sustain a life as just by only writing is not realistic. Of course, I have a part time “day job”. There have two royalty periods where I have made so little that they held it over until the next royalty period. (BTW- another plug for indie publishing is that you don’t have to wait for those two magical times a year to find out how you’re doing, you can check your sales daily. That is also a job hazard.)
I thought about what one has to do to make money as an author and I honestly have no idea. I mean obviously you have to write. You have to force yourself to write more than you want, because the more you write the more options you have of things to sell and the more potential you have to make money. But of course, you’re probably doing that already, right? I hope so.
 Okay, so here are five foolproof plans that will rocket you to the top of the bestseller list so you can “make money as an author”.
Convince Lady Gaga to read your book and tweet her fans to buy it.

Get Justin Beiber to rap/sing sections of your book and put it on Youtube.

Compel HBO to adapt your book into a series that airs on Sunday night.

Befriend Oprah (I mean this one is so obvious. Doing this would solve all your issues.)

Travel back in time and plagiarize a current bestseller. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees with this one.  A lot of book success is many different stars aligning under the perfect situation so it might not work. Plus we’ve all seen Back to The Future.  Once you mess with the space time continuum things don’t always go as planned.

Really, no one can tell you how to make money as a writer. I’m already noticing a pattern in the advice from my fellow girlfriends, if you are in this for the money, you should probably get out now. If you are in it for the writing, than keep at it. And if you have Oprah’s number, I still want it.

Ariella Papa supports her writing habit with a day job. In an ideal world her latest book A Semester Abroad will make her some bank. But if not, that’s okay too.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Some Cold Hard Facts About Making Money Writing Fiction by Wendy Nelson Tokunaga

Back in the early and mid-parts of the 20th century it was actually possible for writers (usually men) to make a living and support their families by writing short stories and novels. Yes, writing short stories and novels—I’m not talking about newspaper reporters or journalists. Back then there was a demand for short fiction and there were many commercial magazines that published short stories and paid well for them. Obviously times have changed. There are very few commercial magazines that publish short stories now. Most of the markets for short fiction today are poorly funded literary journals that pay only in copies of the journal. And, furthermore, you usually have to pay a reading fee to submit a story. A few journals might pay around $800 - $1,000 for a story, but the days of making a living as a short story writer are long gone.

Very few people today make a living writing novels. This is anecdotal, of course, but most all of the novelists I know (and I’m talking about those who have been published by major presses) work at other jobs to make money. Or if they don’t work at other jobs, they have a spouse who supports them and the family or they have come into an inheritance or did well in the stock market. They do make some money from their novels, but it’s far from enough to support themselves, let alone a family. Novelists do exist who make a fine living from their books, but they are the exception rather than the rule. We all know who they are so there’s no need to mention names. These are the authors that our friends and family know about and assume that our success will be identical to theirs.

Here are 5 cold hard facts about making money from novels:

~ Many novelists get a very small advance when a publisher buys their book, if they get one at all.

~ Often, advances are not paid in full, but over time, so even if the amount is substantial, there is no big fat check.

~ Many, if not most, novels sell less than 1,000 copies.

~ Authors do not start collecting royalties on their novels until they earn out their advance.

~ If a novel sells less than 1,000 copies, it is unlikely that the author will earn out her advance.

What about self-publishing, you ask? Yes, with the new e-book models novelists can earn more money and have the capacity to earn attractive royalty rates. Again, as with traditional publishing, there are a few authors who have made a killing with self- publishing. And those who are already known and/or have regained the rights to their backlists of books can do well. But the majority of those who self-publish do not make enough money to support themselves without taking on other jobs or being married to salary-earning, supportive spouses.

Money had never entered into the equation for me in becoming a fiction writer. I remember giving one of my first readings for my debut novel. I was so excited to be published, something I had worked toward for many years. To even be in the position of having a reading at a bookstore and to know that there were some people who showed up who weren’t just my friends or relatives felt like such a wonderful accomplishment. I was over the moon. During the Q&A a gentleman asked me if I had put together a spreadsheet and calculated the time it took me to write my novel paired with the amount of the advance I’d received from the publisher in order to know how much I’d earned per hour. It took me a moment to even understand the question. I tried to explain how it wasn’t about the money, but he wouldn’t hear of it. He said he could probably make more money writing software so he wasn’t going to waste his time trying to write his great American novel.

And he shouldn’t. You should be writing your novel because you can’t not write it—not because you’re dreaming of fame and fortune. This, I think, is the most important cold hard fact about writing fiction and making money.

Wendy Nelson Tokunaga is the author of the novels, "Midori by Moonlight" and "Love in Translation" (both published by St. Martin's Press), and the e-book novels, "Falling Uphill" and "His Wife and Daughters," and e-book short story, “The Girl in the Tapestry.” She's also the author of the nonfiction e-book, "Marriage in Translation: Foreign Wife, Japanese Husband." Her short story "Love Right on the Yesterday" appears in the anthology "Tomo," published by Stone Bridge Press, and her essay "Burning Up" is included in "Madonna and Me: Women Writers on the Queen of Pop." Wendy holds an MFA in Creative Writing from University of San Francisco and teaches for Stanford University's Online Writer's Studio Novel Certificate Program. She also does private manuscript consulting for novels and memoirs. Follow her on Twitter at @Wendy_Tokunaga, friend her on Facebook and visit her website at:

Monday, August 19, 2013

            The Awful Truth:  Making Money As An Author

                                       by Leslie Lehr

When my first novel, 66 Laps, won the Pirates Alley Faulkner Award, I thought I hit the jackpot. Being flown to New Orleans to be wined and dined by the glittering literati at the Words & Music Conference seemed like the beginning of a gilded career. At the first breakfast, I was blinded by the enthusiasm of my new agent and my book deal with Random House. By lunchtime, however, my vision was clearing. I couldn’t help but notice the famous authors sitting in the grand hotel lobby...grading papers.

Unfortunately, being an author - even a “well-published” author, as I’ve been called - is no guarantee of making a living from creative writing. In fact, if you are in it for the money, stop now. Every time small publishers are swept into big businesses, authors suffer. With every library loan, every deep discount, every million-dollar celebrity tome, authors suffer. Why do some books soar while others sink? Often it’s a mystery. There are easier ways.

What A Mother Knows is my sixth book. I have sold essays in popular anthologies, from Mommy Wars to the New York Times Modern Love column. I’ve sold screenplays that were made into films and some that never saw the light of day. I sold one novel right from the outline and another after years of revision. I’ve had a book abandoned by an editor who left the publisher, one orphaned by an agent who moved on, a distributor that didn’t get the book out before my live CNN interview, and an illness that prevented full participation in publicity tours. Rarely have I gone a full year without supplementing my writing income.

There are, however, many other ways to make money in the writing field. MFA programs graduate more teachers than published authors. I moonlight as a writing instructor and manuscript consultant. Both jobs are fun – and far easier than writing.

And yet, if money were the goal, I might have quit that day in New Orleans when I saw my idols reading student work. But writing is more than a profession. It’s an art, an avocation. I love to have a voice, to create something out of thin air, to put a pin in the map of the world that says: I was here. And I love to play with words, to create puzzles of action and emotions then translate the ideas in my head into words I can share on the page. I love the process.

Perhaps that’s why so many people self-publish now. Surely they would love to hit the jackpot. But mostly, they want to be read. Many writers are in the business of writing book series, building a constant stream of revenue with solid stories and skilled marketing. Unfortunately, I’m not one of them. Every book I write takes longer than the last. As my style gets more advanced, my stories get more complex. I want each book to be my best. 

So if you want to write, do it. If you have enough passion to believe that your book will be a bestseller, then nothing will stop you. All you can control is the words on the page. So make them sing. And keep believing, just as I do...this time, I’ll hit the jackpot! 

Leslie Lehr's fabulous new novel is What A Mother Knows
You can find it in bookstores, at airports, and on the Recommended Reading shelf at Target. Any day now it will be #1 on the bestseller list and made into a major motion picture bringing her fame, fortune, and a beach house in Malibu.