Tuesday, July 2, 2013

What Makes It All Worthwhile

Sometimes I feel like throwing in the towel, as far as writing is concerned. I guess all authors suffer from this kind of discouragement at times. I struggle so hard to write and in one year, produce half a dozen books at most, while the annual output from some of my peers is in the double digits. I spend time, energy and money on promotion, only to see my royalties stagnate or even drop. For some reason my books are rarely reviewed (though when they are, the comments are generally positive). I honestly think I write pretty well, but in fourteen years of publishing, I've never, ever had anything approaching a best seller. I don't bother checking my Amazon ranks. It would just be too depressing!

Yesterday, though, I had an experience that made me realize it's all worthwhile. All the sweat and tears, all the frustration, the waiting for titles to appear, the scrambling to get the word out - it means something. Something important.

You see, I got an email from a long time reader and fan. She recently had a computer crash, and she lost a lot of books of mine - some that she'd bought, a few that she'd received as prizes over the time she has been following my blogs and entering my contests. She told me she intended to spend the money to replace the titles her computer tech hadn't been able to recover, because she really wanted to have them on her bookshelf.

Of course that made me feel warm all over. Then, however, she shared something that literally brought tears to my eyes. Although I've "known" her for quite a long time, I didn't know much about her life. It turns out that that she has a severe disability that keeps her bedridden much of the time. Reading is her therapy, her way to escape from the unpleasant realities of her daily life. She told me that my books take her to another world, one in which she can imagine anything happening.

This - well, this is a big deal. I'm not just a writer of trash, of smut that gets hidden behind adults-only filters. I'm a creator of worlds, and I have at least one reader for whom they're very real. When I start feeling down, I can remind myself that sales don't really matter - not nearly as much as bringing happiness to the few loyal readers who really do love my stories.

And furthermore, despite what some puritanical pundits might say about my subject matter, I can reassure myself that writing and publishing my sexy tales is downright virtuous - that in a small way, it makes our world a better place.


PaParanormalFan Renee said...

Lisabet, your post was very touching, so "real" with true emotion, I was tearing up reading your heart-felt words.
I can't possibly imagine all that you must go through & give up (professionally & personally) for your Fans, but believe me, as one of your Loyal Fans, it is worthwhile & deeply appreciated.
When you are able to bring such Happiness & Healing through the Gift of your Words to someone whose Life has forever changed so dramatically...that not only takes an Amazingly Talented Author, but a very Special Person with a Caring Spirit.
If You ever are discouraged or have doubt, just remember, without even knowing, You were able to reach out & touch one of your Readers who truly needed it through your Books & various writings. You provide her with a means to escape the tramatic reminders of her daily life....I'm sure this was very difficult for her to open up about, knowing she shared something so personal....I agree Liasbet, it Makes It All Worthwhile :)

Take Care & Stay Naughty,
PS: A note to help those who may have experienced this same problem I have went through in losing .epub & .pdf files & not being able to recover them from my computer.
I found it wasn't as easy as just contacting where I purchased my eBooks from, especially when I narrowed the eBooks down to Fictionwise who never answered any emails, or B & N, hence having to re-buy the lost books from another place...printing all receipts this time. :)

Lisabet Sarai said...

Thanks so much, Renee!

Sending you a big hug!

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