Liz Kreger is my friend, my critique partner, and one of the people I most admire. Once you read this, you’ll see why. It’s an honor to share her story.
My turn to tell my journey to writing story, huh? Wow … where to begin? I feel like I’d been writing my entire life. Ever since I discovered the world of reading, I’ve wanted to write. It wasn’t until I was in my late teens that I made my first forays into that scary world. Never mind the business end of getting published. That was a far away. Euphorically vague. On edge of the horizon. No, I wanted to write a book.
Now … growing up with eight siblings left me wide open to ridicule. I wasn’t the youngest, but I was near the bottom of the food chain and therefore not taken seriously. Only two of my brothers were serious readers and the rest were more interested in other pursuits, which is probably why they were totally clueless as to my passion for writing. Hell, I even made myself an office in one of our closets. Had a little table and chair, scrounged up a light and diligently scribbled out my stories about horses, dogs and cats. Can’t tell you how many times I’d been scared sh*tless when someone thought it would be hilarious to bang on the closed closet door.
Still, I persisted off and on over the years. Fitting it in when I found the time despite working full time, trying to start a family, whipping what was a pitiful excuse of a yard into a gorgeous garden, and generally dealing with life. Discovered I had breast cancer in 1996 and was treated for that. Clean for seven years and then it returned and I had to deal with it. Naturally I continued my voracious reading. Nuthin’ was gonna interrupt that.
It wasn’t until we were waiting for our travel orders to fly to China to pick up our adopted daughter that I really sat down and pounded out my first complete book … A PROMISE FOR TOMORROW. From start to finish. All 800 pages.
Can you tell I was going stir crazy waiting for our child? Great motivation. However, 800 pages isn’t exactly what publishers were looking for. You try paring down a massive story into 400 pages. Ain’t easy, I can tell you that. But I did it! In 2009, Samhain Publishing released A PROMISE FOR TOMORROW. This was actually the second book of mine that Samhain released. FORGET ABOUT TOMORROW was released the year before. Somehow, those two books seemed to write themselves.
Unfortunately, the health problems continued, which makes finding the energy to write difficult … and at times, impossible. You can say that I’ve been on continuous chemo cocktails for nearly ten years with few breaks between treatments. I’ve discovered that cancer is a tenacious bitch that just doesn’t want to let go. There are many times when it’s a struggle to get up in the morning and force myself to go to the day job. Find the energy to write? Pfft. Wasn’t gonna happen. Evenings? Not a chance. But for a while, I’ve been waking up and writing at 4:30 am a couple times a week. It’s surprising how much work I can do in the wee hours of the morn.
Still, despite the health issues, family demands, the full time job, I’ve written three other contemporary paranormals, a futuristic and am currently working on an Urban Fantasy. As soon as I get them whipped into shape (no doubt kicking and screaming), I intend to submit them to my agent and with luck, will soon have a few more published books under my belt.