I worked at the library yesterday. For those who are new here, yes, I'm a writer and performer, but I'm also a part-time library assistant. A fairly new job for me. One I like very much. What's not to like? I'm surrounded by books and people who love to read. Yesterday someone returned the library's copy of JINXED. My local library owns all of my books. I'm shelved right next to Tom Clancy (cheap thrill for me), only none of my books have been on the shelves for weeks. Checked out multiple times from patrons all over the Atlantic County system and even beyond (you can do this through Inter-library loan). Another thrill for me. Anyway, I happened to be the one to check in JINXED and I was surprised at how worn the copy was. I smiled like an idiot as I noted the bent, crinkled cover and dog-eared pages. This book had been handled and read many, many times. A thrill of monumental proportions. People, lots of people are reading my stories.
A couple of days ago I recieved an email from a reader who had just read JINXED. Please note this book is the first in a trilogy, released in 2004. I've written four others books since then and am currently wrestling with book five, so JINXED is a bit fuzzy in my mind. I know I love the characters and message of the novel, but details? Yep. Fuzzy. This reader noted specific things she liked--character traits, scenes. I was enormously pleased that she adored the story, and jazzed that she'd immediately picked up book two--CHARMED. But her email registered deeper than surface praise. It genuinely bolstered my confidence. The things that she liked most in the book were the things that came naturally for me. Character traits that appeal or strike a chord with me. Scenes that unfolded without thought. Her note confirmed that there are people out there on my quirky wave-length. It prodded me to stop stressing over and second guessing what I'm currently writing. All I need to do is 'be me' and I'll probably be alright. It's a lesson that spills over into everyday life as well. Thank you "Ann" for the reminder.
"It's not who you are that holds you back, it's who you think you're not." ~Author Unknown