I’m not so sure that I’m ready for a brand spanking-new year. The year 2007 was an auspicious one for me—the first book in the Fat City Mystery series, DYING TO BE THIN, made its debut on October second, 2007. In its first month in bookstores, DTBT became an IMBA Bestseller.
Currently, I’m finishing up the second draft of the next book in the series, which is titled A KILLER WORKOUT. Life, as they say, is good.
So why am I anxious about 2008?
Going into 2007, my only focus was on the process of launching my first book. Going into 2008, I’m becoming aware of the challenges of improving the place where my work floats in the vast Sea of Books.
Swimming above me are the Writing Whales—the Big Kahunas. These are the Major Authors, the brand-name, New York Times Bestselling behemoths whose books get snatched up by the reading public, no matter what.
Below me are layers of Other Worthy Writers. Writing merits and awards aside, the Amazon numbers for OWW can sometimes languish in the six-and-seven-digit range.
Between these two groups is an anxious school of writing guppies known as Promising New Authors.
In that school of author fish, I’m a newbie Nemo.
My theory is that, to advance to Writing Whaledom, guppies need to significantly advance their writing craft and reach with each new book.
So here’s the bottom line—I’m finishing up the second draft of A KILLER WORKOUT, working hard to deliver a kick-ass second book.
The themes in A KILLER WORKOUT are bigger, the stakes are higher—and my character, Kate Gallagher, puts more of her character chips on the line.
The readers, of course, will be the ultimate judges.
How about you? Do you reach for “more” with each book? As readers, do you expect more from an author with each new novel? Or am I being a typical type-A Wellesley graduate by putting so much pressure on myself?