As I'm getting ready to start this grand experiment into running my author's website and blog, after managing other business' pages for over three years, I'm reminded of an open mic night or any reading, actually. I'm standing at the podium (or in my undergraduate days, standing in the middle of the smoker's patio with a security light shining behind me on a semi-frigid night right before mid-terms) and all eyes are on me. I've been practicing my reading for a week straight, nipped and tucked to fit a scene into a five-minute time slot, and have decided this is as good as it's going to get.
They've introduced me and I've taken the last large gulp of my Cabernet/Vodka and Sprite/White Russian. I've taken that shaking breath in and said the obligatory "Hey, everyone. I'm Sarah," even though they already know my name because most of the people in the audience I invited to the event and the announcer just said my name ten seconds ago. Now I have to drop my half-captivated, half-tipsy audience into the middle of a three hundred page work and hope they love it. So, I lean towards the microphone and say "Here's what you need to know..."
Basically, I never thought I'd be here. I'm one of those obnoxious writers who decided she wanted to be an author in fifth grade and never really let go of the idea that I would publish books, travel the world on book tours and be the next J.K. Rowling. I wouldn't get married or have kids. I'd live in New York and go to bars and coffee shops with my uber-intellectual friends. I probably would be published at a young age and would never need to go to graduate school. I'd be incredibly happy and everything would be perfect.
Instead, I got married. We live in a tiny house with a dog and cat in the middle of nowhere, North Carolina. I haven't been published, other than a few local articles and magazine essays. I realized after finishing college that I still had a lot to learn, so I joined a low-residency graduate program. Now that's over and I'm left with a day job managing social media profiles. I have three finished novels, but they're all very rough and not ready for anyone to read. Last year, during NaNoWriMo, I got to 10,000 words and never picked it up again. Sometimes I go to bar and coffee shops with my friends, but I mostly sit on my couch with a glass of wine and watch the same Netflix shows over and over again. Everything is not perfect, but I am happy. So, what the hell, let's start a blog.
If I was really professional, I'd tell you this is the last you'll need to know about my personal life. Everything from here on out will be for writers, about writers, and by writers, but that's just not going to happen. It's kind of like when you go on a website and that window pops up saying if you continue to use this site, you agree we can hack into your webcam and post pictures of you with that silly dog filter on your face, or whatever it says. Be honest, you just click through, because it's in the way of the conclusion to the start of the clickbait headline that brought you to this website in the first place. So, here's the pop-up: By continuing to use this site, you agree to just grin and bear it when my personal life pops up. Whether that's randomly posting a picture of my dog halfway through a post (because he's super cute and he deserves it) or instead of a book review, posting a detailed rant about something that may or may not seem relevant to you. In return, I promise to have fun with you, try not to bore you, and (hopefully) post on a regular basis.
My goal is to post book reviews, author interviews, craft musings, and industry news, with some of my own flavor sprinkled in. Most posts will be skewed towards my interests, new adult and young adult literature with fantasy, sci-fi, magical realism mixed in. It's not a hard and fast rule, though, so stay on your toes. And, of course, I want to hear from you. What books do you want to be reviewed? What authors interest you right now? What are you so tired of reading about you could scream? Tell me.
Now, we're at the part of my reading where I end abruptly on a line that in my mind packs a punch, while it probably just makes a couple people tilt their head and nod. My best friend, whose been stress drinking with me for hours before the event started, is standing up from their chair in the back of the room and cheering loudly. You're supposed to clap or snap or whatever new trend is making its rounds these days. Let's save that rant for another day.