Cynthia Eden, Marilyn Brant, Karin Tabke, and Lesley Kagen share the joys and angst of publishing

This week, here at Magical Musings we’re going to try something a little different. We’ve asked four very popular, very different, very fabulous authors the same question and have posted their answers below. Hope you enjoy their responses as much as we enjoyed asking.

CynthiaEden-bwCynthia Eden is the author of the very popular paranormal “Midnight” series. She is also branching out into suspense with the release of her first romantic suspense “Deadly Fear” which is scheduled for release in July, 2010.I'll-Be-Slaying-You.Eden

The second Night Watch book, “I’ll Be Slaying You” is scheduled for release at the end of June of this year.

“What has brought you the greatest joy since you were published, and what has caused you the greatest angst?”

My greatest joy has come from my interactions with readers. Whenever I get an email from someone who has enjoyed my work, I’m thrilled. I love that someone enjoyed my stories enough to take the time out of a busy day to email me. Those fan letters can totally make my week. So, far and away—my greatest joy comes from the positive responses I receive from readers. Knowing that people *like* my stories—that’s wonderful.

Now, for the greatest angst….oh, my angst comes from doubt. Some people think that once you finally sell a book, you’re set. You’re not set. Every time I sit down to write a book, I worry will this be good enough? I wonder if the other books were flukes or if I’ve lost the ability to tell a story. Doubt is my companion, and doubt didn’t vanish with a publishing contract.

But I do my best to shove doubt into a dark corner of my mind. If I ever let doubt get to me, well, I won’t be able to write. And I love writing. So doubt can whisper to me, but I keep right on writing.

Marilyn Brant is the award-winning women’s fiction author of ACCORDING TO JANE (October 2009), FRIDAY MORNINGS AT NINE (October 2010) and THE GRAND EUROPEAN (coming: October 2011), all from Kensington Books.

What has brought you the greatest joy since you were published, and what has caused you the greatest angst?

The greatest joy is, for me, actually a cluster of several things: I love being able to create something that I think has meaning. I love hearing from readers who’ve told me a story I wrote resonated with them or made them laugh. And I love getting to demonstrate for my son the reality of working toward and achieving a personal dream. I’ve heard too many people in my life say, “I’ve always wanted to do (fill in the blank), but I couldn’t because…” My son doesn’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing, but he’s watched me make (very slow!) progress over the years. He’s seen the hours I put in at the computer and experienced all of the stages of the publication process with me. It was incredibly exciting to get to share the journey from aspiring to published writer with him and know that he was really getting the full picture–both the joy of it AND all of the hard work.

The greatest angst is the difficulty in maintaining a healthy balance between all of the different expectations put on a writer within the industry and the life the writer is supposed to live outside of it. In the writing world, I’m juggling the promotion of one novel, the copy edits of another, the drafting of a third, the design/updating of my blog and website, newsletters, speaking engagements, writing loops/Facebook/Twitter and reader emails. In my home life, I’m still supposed to magically make dinner, shop for necessities, clean on occasion (ha!), keep up with my son’s school/extracurricular/social life, stay in touch with friends, help care for aging family members, handle all the bills and taxes and exercise once in a while… I never feel as though I’m managing everything smoothly or getting the balance just right.

Award-winning Karin Tabke is the author of a sizzling Hot Cops series and hot medievals, the Blood Sword Legacy series. Her dark, erotic Blood Moon paranormal trilogy, best described as “Sons of Anarchy meets Rise of Lycans,” will be released in 2011. All her books are deliciously edgy tales of danger and passion.

What has brought you the greatest joy since you were published, and what has caused you the greatest angst?
Hands down my greatest joy since publishing was being chosen as the 2008 RWA Pro Mentor of the year. (Well deserved! adds Edie)

The greatest angst was realizing I only have control of the story and that everything else is out of my control.

lesleyNew York Times Bestseller, Lesley Kagen, is the author of Whistling In The Dark (NAL 07), Land of A Hundred Wonders (Penquin 2008), and Tomorrow River will be a Dutton release on April 29th 2010.

What has brought you the greatest joy since you were published, and what has caused you the greatest angst?

There have been so many joys! My road to publication was extremely difficult. Over 130 literary agents rejected me and scads of publishers, so when I finally managed to achieve my dream it was so much sweeter! And readers, they’re fantastic. I receive loads of emails and their support and encouragement is all that keeps me going on the days that I feel like I’m the worst writer in the universe. Book clubs, too, have been such a blessing. They welcome me into their homes and ply me with goodies. I’ve made so many new friends.

What’s caused me the most angst is keeping all the balls in the air. There’s my civilian life—I’m married, have two kids that still need me with my first grandchild on the way. I have animals I adore and need to take care of, and you know, all the usual stuff women are responsible for. And then there’s my writing life–the actual storymaking and deadlines and events and book clubs. It’s a full busy life. I work hard to make sure that everybody and everything is getting the attention they need, but somedays I drop a couple of the balls.

About Liz Kreger

Liz Kreger writes science fiction/romances and to date, has two books published by Samhain Publishing ... FORGET ABOUT TOMORROW and PROMISE FOR TOMORROW. Liz is presently branching out to contemporary paranormals and is experimenting with urban fantasy.
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12 Responses to Cynthia Eden, Marilyn Brant, Karin Tabke, and Lesley Kagen share the joys and angst of publishing

  1. Edie Ramer says:

    Cynthia, Marilyn, Karin and Lesley, thanks to all of you for your great answers! It’s hard to pick one to comment on, because you all gave me something to think about. And for those of you talking about your doubts . . . big relief! That’s something I’m going through right now. I keep remembering all the good things people said about my book, but those doubts are like mosquitoes, buzzing inside my head. Must swat them away.

  2. Thank you so much, all four of you. Wonderful answers, and all inspiring. As I’m still in the early phase of being published, I see I have a lot to look forward too 🙂 .

  3. Edie, Michelle, Liz and LaDonna~hugs and thanks to you all for inviting me to visit! I loved the questions you asked and really enjoyed having a chance to read Cynthia, Karin and Lesley’s comments to them, too! 🙂

  4. Cynthia Eden says:

    Oh, I loved reading the other authors’ responses. Thanks for inviting me to participate! 🙂

  5. Edie Ramer says:

    Marilyn, glad you liked the questions. I stole them from an interview on your blog. 😆

  6. Donnell says:

    Ah. ladies, you are human! I think we aspiring unpubs sit back and think you’re on some other sort of plain. Wonderful post, and to my friend Marilyn and Karin, I’m waving hi and well-deserved. To Cynthia and Lesley, can’t wait to pick up your books. Thanks for sharing with the Magical Musing Audience!

  7. June Love says:

    Cynthia, Marilyn, Karin, and Lesley–what wonderful insight you’ve given us. While I enjoyed reading about your joys, the angst is what I found most fascinating. Self-doubt is normal, trying to have a life outside of writing is normal, learning to let go of things you can’t control, and creating a balance in your life. Thanks, ladies, for letting me know I’m not crazy.

  8. LaDonna says:

    I just love you gals, and thanks so much for visiting us at Magical! 🙂 I’m a big fan of all your work, and just happy you keep putting those wonderful stories out for the world to enjoy.

    An inspiration to all!

  9. Karin Tabke says:

    lol, my answers were sure succinct! Thank you MM ladies for once again inviting to me to hang out with you. I really do love it here.

  10. Good questions, Edie! I loved the ladies’ answers. I’m still hoping to get that thrill of victory I mean, a first sale!

  11. Liz Kreger says:

    I was just gonna say that your answer was short and sweet, Karin. 😆

    Everyone’s answers were wonderful and we thank you for joining us here at MM. It was a fascinating insight to the lives of some of the authors and what they feel is important aspects of this profession.

  12. Hey, ladies, thanks for letting us have a look at what happens after you sell. Everyone assumes that’s the end of angst. Self doubt has to be the biggest for me, but I’m going to start thinking about it as mosquitoes and swat them away (Thanks, Edie.)

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