A discussion on how I wrote my first book.
I remember the feelings of doubt creeping in. the constant fear of my words not resonating with others or even connecting in anyway shape or form.
I remember hearing the whispers of what I should be doing in selling and promoting my book. They were all in good faith, yet they breathed down my neck like a monster preparing for his kill on an unsuspecting lost traveler.
I remember calling my grandmother and asking her for advice, and her saying ” just do it, hit publish”.
And I remember the relief I felt when I received that email that my first collection of poems was approved through amazon publishing.
wait let me back track….
This journey started in late 2016. I was finishing undergrad and lost. My soul was filled to the brim of depression and anxiety, And I struggled to find out what to do with my life. I had No real confidence in anything.
No understanding of what I wanted to do with my life and struggling to adjust to back home living.
I didn’t have much, but a dream.
A faint dream, a dream of writing my way out of the hole I was in. However, I didn’t believe this dream could be a reality. So I shelved it. A collection of poems I had, sitting in a google doc file accumulating over a few years up until 2019. Just waiting to be shared with the world. But I lacked the courage to publish. In fact, I had no idea how to publish.
The process was killing me and I struggled with the confidence of even performing my poetry, let alone putting it all into a book. So I just went researching and looking for answers as if I were a child lost in a forest thick with fog
I remember seeking out publishers and their ridiculously high prices for little royalties and thinking, this isn’t going to propel me to my vision as a writer. None of these companies are going to give me remotely anything close to the bang for my buck. On top of that, they kept calling me to see if I still wished to publish with them. After a while I decided to seek my own route, devoid of the middle man. Therefore, I began researching self publishing.
It was a short process that brought me straight to Kindle direct publishing, It was painless, cheap, and easy to navigate, therefore making my life so easy on the publishing part.
but then there were my poems. I had this heap of poems that weren’t edited or even looked at for a while.
And I also struggled with the process of a title. I remember just wishing to rage quit when it came to even finding something that remotely coincided with what I was pushing for. I still had to edit my poems, then come up with a name, I kept pushing back the date. I wanted to publish in late 2019, but the agony of editing and the fear of failing swallowed my anxiety filled soul.
But then, like a flourish of inspiration, I discovered a title Confessions of A Hopeless Creative.
One that fit the description of my life perfectly. These poems are my confessions, my story, and I’m a hopeless creative.
The hopelessness derives from me aimlessly wandering through the wonders of life optimistically falling apart. Thus, Confessions of A Hopeless Creative was born.
At first, I was going to label my book, The skin I’m in. It was inspired by two of my good college friends that had the same idea for an event at the school. However, that had copyright infringement all over it. So, there I was, stuck attempting to find a title for a book I struggled with making, at the end of 2019. continuously procrastinating and promoting a collection of poems that centered around my journey through anxiety and depression. And I wallowed in the misery of self publishing and lack of confidence.
However, I did have a working title, so I made progress.
I spent months attempting to edit, and get editors and talking to people about the process and it became a spiral of emotions and doubt that pushed me nearly over the edge.
I began to feel that writing wasn’t my dream. Because it wasn’t perfect. because I wasn’t doing it this way or that way or even at all.
And then, in march of 2020, in the middle of a pandemic, I called my guru. My inspiration, my saint. My grandmother. She was the expert on all things literature, and she told me to just publish the book. that typos are found in every piece of literature, That there’s no such thing as a perfect body of work.
And there is was. all the doubt, all the fear, all the anxiety I felt had washed away. All of the months of hesitation and the collapsing of my own psyche. it all washed away, I had made my final edits.
Then I hit the publish button and viola.
I became a published Author.
At that point, whether I sold 1 copy or a thousand copies, I felt accomplished. screw my two degrees, screw making it out of my hometown briefly. this was THE accomplishment. I was a published author, and nobody could take that away from me.
I learned a lot throughout the process. The most important lesson is to take people’s council, but not all of what they say. As a person who cares a lot, I can easily allow other’s thoughts to penetrate my image of something and terrorize it. thus, creating an altered image that was never there to begin with. The process of making this book was just that, listening to others about something that was uniquely crafted for me. this was my project, flaws and all.
I loved this process, the ups the downs, it was all worth it. As of now, I’m preparing to release my second book and i can’t wait. Hopefully this story can reach others and propel them to take that leap as it did me.