Endings, In-Betweens and New Beginnings

Hi my friends,

This is a long post. If you don’t like to read long posts, it’s okay if you pass on all this – but I wanted to give you a heads-up on where I’m at with my writing career and all it entails.

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You’ve not heard from me in a rather long time. I’ve been re-blogging not “me-blogging.”  There have been no newsletters since . . . ah . . . spring of 2017? I’ve had trouble coming up with anything to tell you, or (more precisely) how to say what I’ve thought of to say – and so I end up saying nothing. My usual problem with letter writing,  blogs and social networking; but I need to share some things with you.

I’ve lately been reading and studying a Christian book called Reflecting God and in the section called Nurtured by the Light in the Rhythms of Life the author talks about four places we will find ourselves in life’s changing cycles:

Endings

In-between Times

New Beginnings

Settled Places

For the last three years or so I’ve been in a repeating cycle of endings and in-betweens. Mind you, much of it is stuff that can seem pretty minor when compared to . . . but it’s best not to compare our paths to those of others around us. What one person will find only moderately hard to go through can knock someone else entirely off their feet. This stuff has been things that have been from hard to very hard for me to go through – and yes, even been knocked off my feet a few times.

In the spring of 2015 an editor I didn’t know, not my regular editor and given my manuscript by my publisher, tried to rewrite my second book to be what she wanted it to be, resulting in me having a sort of nervous breakdown. (She was let go and the book as I wrote it is what ended up being published.)

Problems with various aspects of book launches happened. A nearly totally messed up blog tour for book #3 that ended up with all the writing of posts and interviews having to be done in a very short amount of time while I was also doing a bunch of other things for the launch.

My former publisher side-stepping my queries about when he wanted book #4 turned in, with him telling me “don’t worry about it for now” –  to eventually finding out he kept putting me off because he was going out of business. Only, after some awkward issues and me leaving his company, he didn’t close up after all.

Two of our cats passing away about five months apart. Another cat having chronic eye problems including cancer on his right eye’s third eyelid and surgery to remove the third eyelid last December.

My much loved uncle who was helping with some of my book expenses passing away last December and . . .

and . . .

I just found out on April 5th that my dear friend, instructor, writing coach and editor Mary Rosenblum died when something happened (not yet determined) that caused the single-engine plane that she was piloting (her own plane) to crash back on March 11th.

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Getting a bear hug.

Many endings. And I’ve been spending a long time in what the author of Reflecting God calls the in-between times that follow endings. The in-between times when, with God’s help, you do your grieving and putting yourself back together.

I haven’t gotten anywhere near the next stage, which is new beginnings, before the next ending would hit and I’ve become weary and numb. And some of this weariness and numbness is why I’ve not done well with getting started on writing book #4 of my cozy mystery series.

I’ve lost my virtual assistant, Tammy, who was being a huge help with posting to social sites for me, and other marketing/social tasks (paying Tammy was the book related expense my uncle was helping with).

But much bigger for me is losing Mary; my friend, coach, editor and major encourager who has been with me ever since I started this journey of being a published author. It’s hard thinking about working on another book without Mary.

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Mary Rosenblum and me with my Benjamin Franklin Gold Award for Mystery and Suspense – April 2017. Her editing skills were a huge part of my winning this award.

I have a lot of decisions to make, but I need time to make them.

I will be bringing out an anthology of four short stories entitled Twombly Tales set in my cozy mystery world of Twombly, IL.

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It is being formatted right now. This was intended to be the free giveaway for people who signed up for my newsletter. Well – there really isn’t a newsletter, as many of you know by now, and I’m not sure there will be one. The newsletter is one of the decisions I’m needing to make. I will be able to do download links for people to get the Kindle and epub versions of Twombly Tales fairly easily (I hope). I want to also have it available in print on demand, but I’m not sure how to do that. I’ll be looking into it. I want you, and any new readers who will be discovering me and my books, to be able to get Twombly Tales in whatever format you like to read in.

I will be completing the rebranding of my series by getting my three existing books in their new persona of “The Can Be Mysteries” put through all the publishing processes and available on Amazon – I hope by sometime in May. They have all been through a new proof edit and will soon be heading into the formatting stage. You’ve already seen their lovely new covers. 🙂

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I want to write and publish book #4.  At this time I’ve not even started writing it. Much of the ideas for it are in place but not written yet. I want to do this for you, my friends and readers. Your enjoyment of my books is what I write for and so many of you have been asking about book #4 – I don’t want to let you down. I also want to do it for my older brother, who made suggestions for the plot, and now I also want to do it for Mary. She very much wanted me to keep writing because she believed in the quality of my writing and my books.

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What I don’t know about yet and need to make decisions about is all the social networking, marketing and promotional aspects of the writing business.  It is the biggest burden of all, the most exhausting and anxiety producing, and the stuff I’m least suited for. Basically, if I keep up with all of that in a manner the book writing industry says is what has to be done, I’m never going to be able to have the mental space I need to write book #4. I have got to figure out what I can and can’t do without totally leaving you all in the lurch.

So . . .

As I figure it out I’ll do blog posts and/or Facebook posts about my decisions as I make them. And I’ll try to do more “me-blogging” and less reblogging. Don’t know how often or how consistent, but more than I have been doing. 😉

Thank you so very much for your support of me and my books. You all mean so much to me. 💖😊

Hugs from Pearl.

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Endings, In-Betweens and New Beginnings

  1. Oh, my dear. So much and so many. You and the bear just about wiped me out for the day.

    I had one thought about all of this, and it may or not be valid, but it does make a lot of sense. You want to write that 4th book, but obviously that book isn’t ready to be written. In a way it’s like being 8 months pregnant and out to here with it, the baby’s kicking up a storm, and you want to get the entire business over with. You have the ideas, the notes, the outlines. Put it away for a bit, and focus on getting your legs under you again.

    And we ain’t going anywhere, Pearl. We know you’re out there, you know we’re out there, and it’s okay.

    (Have you thought about getting a helper, someone who can handle the fiddly bits for promoting, and marketing, so that you can free yourself up a bit, anxiety wise)?

    I have a bear too, his name his Mr. Bear and he gives good hugs, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Judy. ❤️ Your words touched me deeply, especially that “And we ain’t going anywhere, Pearl.” That is one of my biggest concerns and it was wonderful to hear that. 😊

      I liked the pregnancy analogy as well.

      For now, book four is on hold. I just did up that cover for fun. (I like working with such stuff.) The main focus now is getting everything in order to get the anthology available in some way and to get the three rebranded books up on Amazon. I know I won’t be able to focus on writing book #4 until that’s all off my mind. I do have an author friend who said she will walk me through getting the novels put into CreateSpace, so I’m hoping it won’t be too much of an ordeal. Most times I try to do stuff like that it takes me way longer than people tell me it will.

      I don’t really have anyone to pick up the fiddly bits who wouldn’t want to be paid for it – a totally reasonable request, but I don’t have the funds for it. The funds need to go to getting the books produced and available to people. What to do with the marketing and that stuff – how much of that I’ll actually be doing at all anymore – is part of what I’m needing to take time to work through.

      So cool to hear you have a bear too! 😊 My bear is nicknamed 3B. His real name is a secret – at least I don’t remember telling people his name . . . 😉 He’s a good buddy and has traveled all over with me and my hubby.

      Hugs, Judy, and thank you for the wonderful comment!

      Pearl

      Like

  2. Oh, Pearl, I am so sorry for all that has befallen. I cannot imagine where you have managed to pull the strength from to cope with all these changes and losses. My heartfelt condolences for the loss of your two lovely cats, your beloved uncle and your wonderful friend.

    Even without all the writing issues re that editor who tried to rewrite your work or the publisher, you have already seen a lifetime of stress and heartache.

    You are doing so incredible and you should be proud of everything you have done and will do. We are all here for you and should you ever need anything my friend, please reach out. I am here and will help in whatever way I can.

    *HUGS*

    PS: I don’t have a bear, but I have a pink plushy octopus who gives hugs when I’m struggling. He’s called Cyril. 🙂

    Like

    1. Hugs and thanks for all your kindness, Ari! 😊

      It helps so much to receive understanding from my friends!

      I don’t know what help I’ll need, seems we often don’t know that until the need arises, but I’ll definitely keep your offer to help out in mind. You’re a dear!

      Cyril sounds adorable! 🐙 Give him a hug from me. (Sorry he’s showing up purple, he was pink when I selected him – but don’t octopuses change colors anyway? 😊 )

      Thank you so much for responding.

      *HUGS*

      Liked by 2 people

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