I’ve been away for awhile, finishing up my novel, titled, “Pumps”. Not like anyone cares or notices (I have no regular readers or visitors but I pretend I do – haha). That’s why I haven’t posted in awhile though, because I’ve been feverishly working on my novel, but now it seems like I’m back. I’ve always said, when you’re in the zone, you gotta zero in and take advantage. I was definitely in the zone.
So L.A. Ninja is still doing pretty well as far as I’m concerned. Although I have always hoped that many people would read it and enjoy the story as I do, it is not really turning out that way. I guess I have mixed feelings about it. I try to remain happy that I have sold any copies at all, and the three reviews that I did get so far are freaking awesome, so I have to be psyched about that. Right? Ok, I’m cool now, did you enjoy going on that quick emotional breakdown with me? My head is a scary place to be, lol.
Interestingly, after talking with some distant (distant as in they live in New Jersey and were here to visit) friends over dinner the past weekend, the topic of my novel writing came up, so of course, I told them about L.A. Ninja. Surprise and shock is the usual reaction I get, and they did not fail me there. We did also discuss the fact that I never tell people that I know that I am a writer. It’s funny really, from a psychological perspective, on why I never tell anyone about it. It should seem so obvious that I would immediately tell everyone I know about this this thing that I’m so passionate about, yet only a few people know about it. You’d think that I’d announce it to the world, right?
But I don’t. I don’t have a good reason, either. I think I’m a bit modest and even a little shy about it. I think it feels strange to just blurt it out to people too. It never seems natural, like when I’m in the moment. Then, also, I don’t want them to feel obligated to go buy it. I wonder now, as I’m writing this, do artists and singers do the same thing? Like, if I could sing, would I announce it to my friends? Would I start belting out Vicente Fernandez songs out of the blue? Would I do it while we’re standing in line at Starbucks? I wonder. I guess that’s why I was never a good salesman, lol.
I digress, however. I do have something that I’m very proud of, and that is the first review that I’ve ever gotten. It was written by a reader on Amazon.com:
“Kept me at the edge of my seat the whole time. Excellent narrative, characters and plot twists. Can't wait for the next one.”
Are you kidding me!? That was awesome! And I’m so glad that the review was a good one, in fact the best, with 5/5 stars. I was so nervous that the review was going to be bad, or that it was going to trash my work. There is this anxious fear I have that I will face utter rejection from readers that invest time in my book. (Maybe that’s why I don’t tell my friends??) So far, though (knocking on wood) the three reviews are good. Thanks to Eli, and the others. I owe you guys a beer, or soda, or tea, or whatever you prefer to drink. I’m glad I didn’t let you down.
Now, onto Pumps. Pumps represents a huge divergence from L.A. Ninja. First off, it’s a book about a woman trying to find herself. You can’t get further away from LA Ninja than that. I think it’s interesting because this woman, Alexis, has been a very complicated character for me to write. At least with Gabe, he was very focused and motivated, which made him easier to write. Alexis though, is emotional and complicated. I was hardly ever sure what she would do next, whereas with Gabe (protagonist –LA Ninja for those who don’t know) I pretty much knew what he would do at every turn.
The other difficult piece was the process of Alexis finding herself. I guess it can be hard for someone –anyone- to find themselves, that is, find their true purpose in life. It involves someone getting to know their true self, and becoming clear about what they want out of life. It rarely happens easily, in my experience. It can happen through trauma in some cases, or through trial and error. It can happen as easily as having an epiphany in a dream. Usually though, it happens to many of us as we experience life and get older, finally narrowing down what we like and dislike in life, and what like to spend our time doing the most. If you can answer those questions, you most likely are already focused on finding true happiness, whatever that may mean to you.
That has been the hard task for someone like Alexis. She is in her late twenties, smart, sophisticated, strong, and determined. She has a great career in the fashion industry, and just when she thinks she has life all figured out, life shows up to begin unraveling a destiny that she never saw coming. The truth is, the story is a fantasized version of what I think my wife’s life could have been if she hadn’t married me. I promised her that I would write this one next, and I finally have.