This past week, I did something that scared me.
I asked for the rights back to my older books. 16 in total. My shifter series, my selkie series and a few standalones. I now have to decide what to do with them.
Right now, I’m trying to stay open-minded. I’m exploring the world of self-publishing for some of the books, and I hope to submit others to different publishers. Either way, asking for the rights back left me in a tailspin. Because no matter what I decide, I’m left with the possibility that some of those books won’t see the light of day again.
As I’ve shared here before, 2019 was already a tough year in publishing for me. As a result, asking for my rights back on these olders books felt like a sucker punch, even though I initiated this change. I want to be clear, I didn’t ask for the rights back because of anything the publisher of those books did. It was just time for a change.
But now, quite frankly, I’m having to work through my fear, and that’s not easy. I find it difficult to be creative when stressed. Still, I’m trying to look at this positively. It could be the start of something good. In fact, I want to rework some of the stories and make them stronger. As writers, we are in this amazing position to learn as we go along, so I welcome the opportunity to fix little issues in my first books. However, this is a massive undertaking and I know I won’t be able to tackle them all at once.
It’s been hard. This past week, I’ve felt less like an author than I did since day one. Imposter syndrome hit me hard. My emotions have been all over the place. Last year this time, I had won the Northern Hearts award for A Good Man. This year, I am a writer coping with extreme self-doubt. There are days when I feel as if very few people would notice if I decided to pack it in. I would just be one less writer in an overly-saturated field.
And yet it’s never been in my nature to quit, and I love those books. When I started writing, it was because I needed to hear certain stories, and those are the ones I wrote. I hope to rediscover that awe in writing again, that passion. Maybe I really can turn my backlist blues into something wonderful.
Either way, the books in question will likely become unavailable some time this month. I’m not sure when. I hope my readers will stay tuned and continue to follow my writing journey. And I hope to share some good news with you soon.