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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Writing Through Release Day

Today Tyrean Martinson joins us to tell us how she copes with the stress surrounding the publication of one of her books. 

Every writer who has had a book, story, poem, or article published knows the stress of the last week before publication. What if I missed 1,000 typos? What if everyone hates it? What if no one actually reads it? What if my family members/friends read it and think strange thoughts about me? What then? What will I do? Have I based too much of my identity on writing? What if I was meant to be a rock-climbing travel guide even if I’m terrified of heights? (It might actually be less scary, really.)

As a story writer and poet with works published by paying markets under my belt, one might think that none of these questions would have cropped up when I self-published my first novel. Instead, it felt intensified a thousand fold. When release day came, I hadn’t slept well for a week, I had a nervous, maniacal laugh, and I wanted to become a hermit. My family took me out to eat and told everyone in the restaurant I was a published author. I wanted to duck under the table. Instead, I smiled, blushed, and tried to hold back my crazy-nervous laugh.

As I approached my second novel release date, I slowed down and tried to figure out how to handle that stress.

I decided to write through publication. It seemed too simple, but I thought it might work.

For each day that I worked on pre-release matters, I gifted myself with stress-free writing time. I wrote flash fiction, hint fiction, poetry, and journal entries. I worked on outlines for my next book, character-building writing prompts, and new story starts with no idea of where they might go. I gave myself creativity dates – time in a coffee shop or the garden with a journal and my laptop, and a mandate to not think about my novel for 45 minutes.

I can’t say that I reached release day without stress, but I did get more sleep and I skipped the maniacal, nervous laugh part. My family celebrated by cooking dinner for me at home. When I went through some post-release blues, I realized I hadn’t taken my “writing” sanity saving moment that day.

Just a few weeks later, I’m writing every day instead of stressing out over my sales numbers. I’m determined to move forward with this attitude: I am a writer, therefore, I write. I invite the words to daydream and dance with me. That’s it. It’s not a magical cure-all, but writing for joy has its own kind of every day power.

Champion in Flight 

A year after she won the battle for Septily, Clara feels trapped in Skycliff by the Allied Council. As the last pieces of information about the Healing Caves fall into place, Clara is attacked by an assassin. Covert Drinaii mercenaries and the Council aren’t going to stop Clara from her quest to heal her broken blade. As Champion of Aramatir, she must act.

Meanwhile, in the joint kingdoms of Rrysorria and Wylandria, the youngest and still cursed swan prince despairs of ever being whole again. In a moment of anger and desperation, Liam discovers a blood link between him and a dark sorceress.

Clara won the battle for Septily, but her battle isn’t over.

Champion in Flight is the second book in The Champion Trilogy.

About the Author

Tyrean Martinson lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest, with her encouraging family. She likes to write, read, teach, ski, bicycle, and walk.

Tyrean has been published in Overcoming Adversity, The Best of Every Day Poets and Sunday Snaps: The Stories. Dragonfold and Other Adventures, and Light Reflections showcase Tyrean’s stories and poetry. She is currently hard at work on the third novel in The Champion Trilogy: Champion’s Destiny.



Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You gave yourself another focus. Good for you! Although I'm really curious about that maniacal laugh now...

Natalie Aguirre said...

You've got a great way to deal with the stress. I love the idea of rewarding yourself by doing something stress-free. And to focus on the writing. Thanks for the advice.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I can't take it when people say I published a book either. It's so sad, I mean I should be bold and be like, yes, I did, buy it, it's great. Instead I blush and cringe like you. My dream goal is to be Anne Tyler and write from some reclusive place and become a literary hermit. Wouldn't that be nice?

Tyrean Martinson said...

Yes, having another focus really helps! And the maniacal laugh only shows up when I'm nervous, anxious or stressed - which then is kind of embarrassing so it doesn't help with any of the above three. You don't really want to hear it.

Natalie - Thanks, Natalie, and thanks for stopping by today!

Karen Lange said...

Excellent advice, Tyrean! I am so glad you shared this. I am facing the same kinds of questions and stress as my second book release is approaching. One part of me says that my writing is okay, another says it's lousy, and some days I just want to head for the hills! Thanks so much for this boost. :)

Thanks, Unicorn Bell, for hosting Tyrean!

Cherie Reich said...

Wonderful advice! I was much more nervous with releasing a novel than anything else I've published. For me, getting the print proof calmed me during that last flurry of activity toward publication. The book was so pretty and looked like a real book that I could believe it was one. LOL!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Elizabeth - I totally agree! I can talk about my writing with other writers, but talking about my writing to someone I don't know, or someone I know who doesn't write (or hasn't told me that they write) is just terrifying!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Karen - you're welcome! Glad I'm not the only one that feels that way, but at the same time, I wish none of us ever felt that way. :)

Cherie - Thanks! The print proof is a pretty sweet way to gain confidence! :)

Lexa Cain said...

I think you're absolutely right. Over-stressing and tirelessly promoting don't help in the long run. A writer can't forget why they started writing in the first place -- to WRITE! Wishing you much success with your release! :)

Stephanie Faris said...

Great tip! I'm going to have to try that one next time. My anxiety centers around what I should be doing to promote it. It never feels like it's enough--yet everything I do feels like it's a drop in the bucket.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Lexa - Thanks! Yes, the promotion stuff just seems mountainous.

Stephanie - Thanks! It often does feel like a small drop in an ocean-sized bucket. I can't think about it too long . . . and so now, I'm back to writing. :)

Carol Riggs said...

Ha, the maniacal laugh. So glad you found ways to de-stress the whole situation, Tyrean! Congrats on the release(s). :) (Skycliff--cool name)

Misha Gericke said...

I'm so taking your advice next time around, Tara.

I'm expecting double the stress because I'm releasing two books on the same day.

Huntress said...

what a unique way to deal with the stress...more writing!

Heather Holden said...

I can relate so well to this kind of stress. Glad writing has been able to keep you from getting completely overwhelmed by yours!

Laurel Garver said...

The creativity dates are such a great idea! I think the less you tightly grip what you can't control but turn the energy to what you can, the more peace you have. (Easier said than done, though!)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Misha - two books in one day! Whoa. Keep writing. :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Huntress - it's just one way, sometimes taking a walk works wonders too. :)

Heather - thanks!

Laurel - yes, letting the out of control stuff go is a good idea. It is tough, though.

Sherry Ellis said...

I think every writer is a little nervous as to how his/her book will be accepted. You have some good ways for dealing with the nerves.

Sherry Ellis said...

I think every writer is a little nervous as to how his/her book will be accepted. You have some good ways for dealing with the nerves.

Jeff Chapman said...

Sounds like a good plan.