Last week I was doing a google search, collecting pictures to create a big debut year photo album when I stumbled across this one, taken for the Brooklyn Newspaper. This photo has a story: Two hours before the photographer showed up at my apartment, I had a major meltdown in the shower. I pulled myself together with the help of heavy concealer and blush, but my hands were shaking so bad I could barely hold my book steady. Seeing this photo reminded me of the day and inspired the following post. I was going to follow my fellow debut’s footsteps and talk about all the highs of my debut year. Oh believe me, I have a lot to be grateful for, I’ve had some awesome highs. But today, I want to talk about the lows. If you’re on this site trying to learn what it’s like being a debut and if you plan on becoming an author, you need to prepare for the lows so they don’t blindside you. I thought I was prepared and I was dead wrong.
I didn’t expect such horrible backlash from writing this book.
A simple google search of Allegedly and you’ll see dozens of book reviews, some praising it, others hating it. What I never expected is to be cc’ed on those reviews via twitter, facebook or some emailing the links to my personal account, as if I was made of stone and had no feelings what so ever. Imagine being in a huge concert hall, sitting on a stool in the middle of the stage, a bright spot light shinning down on you while an audience of 500 people berate you, one by one before spitting in your face. That’s how I feel at least once a week. I’ve dealt with it by gripping on to one simple truth: You can’t change the past, you can only move forward.
I didn’t expect to lose friends writing this book
In times of adversity is when people’s TRUE colors show the most. There were several times when I saw whom I thought were my friends show their selfishness and self-serving attitudes. Who simply weren’t there for me the way I had been there for them in the past. It hurts, watching people melt out of your life, but I do walk with a lighter load.
I didn’t expect to spend so much money writing this book
After meeting with my accountant this summer, I realized I spent a LARGE chunk of my advance marketing Allegedly. I justified it by claiming “you only debut once and I should come out with a bang!” But despite everything– the outside publicist, the swag, the marketing consultant, etc– Allegedly’s numbers didn’t reflect the efforts exerted. There’s really no way to predict a books success, you have to take each on a case by case basis and be at peace with knowing you did everything you could.
I didn’t expect to lose myself writing this book.
I spent the first six months of this year in a dark, dark place. On the outside, I pretended to be happy, but internally, I was a mess. I saw myself transform back to 16-year old Tiffany, dealing with depression, anxiety, chronic asthma attacks and migraines, in the midst of trying to get into college. It didn’t truly hit me how much I reverted until mid-July, when I just became weary of life itself. I finally started practicing self-care by paying attention to my needs: reading books, eating the right food, drinking more water, spending time with my family, focusing on things that bring me joy, and journaling. This November, I’ll be taking a trip to a spiritual retreat that focuses on self-love and healing. I want to walk into 2018 in a better place and be stronger than ever for my second book release.
Tune in next week, where I promise to end my debutante tenure on a super high note and what’s next! 🙂