Deb Joanne Keeps It Cool

First: Important news! Congratulations to Kerry Ann Morgan who has won an annotated copy of SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE. Thanks for celebrating my launch week with us!

Now, to today’s business.

This week’s theme is heat. Quite timely, considering this extreme heat wave. Even though I’m in Canada, it gets pretty hot up here and we do get humidity, so it’s fair to say that the last week has felt like tropical hell in these parts. I’m very tired of the ‘hot enough for you’ comments and so thought I’d go a different way for today’s post. Seeing as I write for kids, it doesn’t seem right to talk about heat in books, so you won’t be getting a 50 Shades review here (and despite not being a stranger to heat in books, I haven’t read it anyway).

So as my book just launched, I think it’s fair to say, I’ve been feeling some metaphorical heat. As in the pressure to succeed and sell a lot of books. What that ‘a lot’ means, I’m not really sure. I don’t know what my publisher’s expectations are, but I do know I need to sell more than just me and my mom can buy on our own. Much rides on a book’s release, much more than just the success of the one book itself; unless you’re planning to only publish one book, your publisher will be looking at sales when considering your next book. Will there be a sequel? Depends on the sales. Will there be a next book at all? Depends on the sales. Will you eat next week? Well, yeah, because your advance wasn’t near enough to allow you to quit your day job, so you still have that to pay the bills. But you see where I’m going with this. There’s a lot of pressure. I’ve heard that it’s hard to get published, but even harder to stay published. Can I say for the record: THAT IS TERRIFYING TO ME! Because I really would like to stay published. I would REALLY like to make a career of this writing thing. And that means a book two and beyond. So yeah, as I’m launching my book and am having a great time with that (which I really am-see the picture of the fun reading I did on the weekend) I’m also feeling the pressure to sell a lot of books. Which kind of sucks, because I can’t do a lot at this point. I mean, yeah, I’ve done a lot of online marketing and have gone out and signed stock at bookstores, and have now even gone and done readings, but I can’t sign stock at every store. And I can’t do a ton of readings outside my own community. Much of it is out of my hands now.

And that makes me sweat. See? Heat.

But so much about being an author means letting go. Letting go of what you can’t control. Doing what you can (like writing a good book and doing your best to market it), and leaving the rest up to the fates. And trying not to worry about it too much and moving on with living your life. That’s SO important-I remember one year, I spent a whole summer obsessing and worrying about submissions, and come labor day, I had nothing to show for it except a wasted summer and a bunch of rejections.  So that’s what I have to do: I have to get out from under heat lamp, trust that I’ve done all I can do, and concentrate on what’s really important.

And today, what’s important is this:


How about you? How do you cool off, either from the crazy heat we’ve been experiencing, or from the pressure of needing to succeed?

10 Replies to “Deb Joanne Keeps It Cool”

  1. Love that pic of you in the pool! Now, that’s the way to stay cool.

    It’s hard not to feel that pressure to sell, isn’t it? Heck, I’m already worried about it, and my book hasn’t even been released yet. I guess all we can do is write the best books we know how to, throw them out of the nest, and hope like heck they can fly.

    Don’t worry. SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE has strong wings. 🙂

    1. I can’t tell you how happy I am that we have this backyard pool – it is not only fun, but a great way to just sort of hang out and NOT look at the computer (read: Amazon rankings).
      Thank you for the SM@L love. You ARE the wind beneath my wings (someone had to say it).

  2. I love that pic, too!

    What a great way to talk heat, Joanne. You’ve summed it up perfectly. THAT heat never seems to end–the heat of pressure in this business and nowadays–as we often discuss here–so much of the onus is on the author herself to make those numbers grow. And that can be both exciting and daunting at the same time!

    1. I believe this is the first time since at least puberty, that I’ve allowed a swimsuit photo to be taken, so the heat must really be affecting me. And yeah, it never ends, does it? I’m sure you’re already feeling it for book two…

  3. Nice picture J, you really look cool. No matter what your career is you have the pressure to succeed (or shall I say the HEAT and it is brutual here).

    There’s an old saying that comes to mind and it is for all of you:

    “STRENGTH dosen’t come from what you can do,
    it comes from OVERCOMING the things you once thought you couldn’t”

    and you all have made it whether it be one two three or a long series of writing books YOU WILL MAKE IT that is what you have to remember, live is a journey of ups and downs so just remember STRENGTH AND OVERCOMING.

    Joanne,SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE has made it and will continue to make it, and the next book and the next book. You have done a fantastic job of promoting (along with your Mother just kidding).

    I like what Linda says: DON’T WORRY SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE HAS STRONG WINGS” and you have great support from your writer friends your Deb friends and your family.

    1. Hi Mom, I think my stint here at the Deb Ball has made YOU so philosophical! I appreciate the support and believe me, I know you’re doing an excellent job of promoting for me. Next time, I’ll see if I can get a little extra in my advance to pay for my in-house publicist.

  4. Thanks J,

    I am ready willing and able for the next hundred books (and no payment for your inhouse publicist) just being your Mom and enjoying your success is all I need.

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