November 8, 2012

the post where i show you my heart

kittens...

I love you. I really do. And I hope you know that everytime I tell you "thank you" or that "I appreciate you"... I really, really mean it.

I want to give you a little background on me so that you can hopefully get a better understanding of just HOW thankful I truly am.  :)

I got fired from my job about two and half years ago. It was funny because at the time I was so convinced that I'd be jobless for probably a whopping whole 2 weeks before someone else scooped me up and I was working my ass off again. And the thing was, at the time, I really needed a break. I can't even begin to talk about what went on in that work environment and what I had to deal with, but to say it was one of the most challenging experiences of my life would be a true understatement.

Anyway, I couldn't have been more wrong about my ability to find a new position with ease. Holy shit, i'd never been here before. I'd never been jobless. I'd never been tossed into an environment that was filled with so many under and over qualified people looking for work all at once. So I bought a laptop and starting writing almost immediately.  But I was still looking for work and applying to numerous jobs daily.

I could barely get an interview- and when I did, I ususally left there in tears because I had just come from a miserable work environment and the last thing I wanted was to be tossed into another one. I didn't want to do something I hated. I wanted to enjoy how and where I spent my days. Life is too short.
Nothing felt right anymore.
All the interviews- THE MERE THOUGHT of working for someone else- it didn't sit well in my guts. It's like I knew somewhere inside me that that wasn't what I was supposed to do anymore. It didn't feel right to work for someone else. It felt like I was taking a step backward when I was handed this gift to move myself forward.

But how do you explain that kind of "logic" to a family who needs your income? 

Thankfully I have a very supportive family.  :)

Not like it would have mattered- I honestly don't think I could have found a job if my life had literally depended on it.  It's HARD out there. It's crazy competitive and the people hiring like to make the decision for you before they've even given you a chance "I think you'll be bored in this position." "You're way too overqualified for this."  "Why would you want to do this job, when you've been doing this sort of job the last 10 years?"

Moving on... 
I couldn't get hired (obviously lol). And I released my first book (in dreams) not knowing really anything about this business. I just knew that I had a story I wanted to tell and no one was going to stop me from telling it. So I did. And then I wrote another. And i'm working my ass off to try to make a name for myself in the Indie/Self Published author world. And it's a lot freaking harder than it looks. There's A LOT of indie authors out there. And sometimes things seem so hit or miss- the moon lines up and the stars align just right for some people and not for others. And it's frustrating because i'm sitting there trying to sell books so i don't feel like such a worthless non-income-bringing-in loser (ahem), but nothing i'm doing is working- and my books are being ripped apart and people are hating them and the comments are freaking mean and they tell me I suck and write like a 12 year old and i'm sure i'm supposed to be offended, but I know some pretty cool 12 year olds out there, so whatever.

But of course that leads to the inevitable question of- am I supposed to be writing books at all?  And if i'm NOT supposed to be writing books, then just exactly what the hell am I supposed to be doing because NOTHING ELSE FEELS RIGHT

Sorry.

I'm calm now.  lol

So I'm writing books, but not really making any money. I'm looking for a job, but I can't freaking get one. 

And what happens next?

We lose our house.  After trying to refinance and get help with the mortgage (all of which the bank said no too)- we were in the middle of a short sale when the house went to auction. The bank didn't stop the auction and I went and watched it get sold to the highest bidder. We had to move a month later. (that was all this past may/june)

And really?  It's okay. I mean, I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and i'm perfectly fine with how everything turned out- but that doesn't mean it wasn't horrible and hurtful and really fucking sad to get to this point.  You know?

Holy crap, do I have a point?  Yes, I do.  My point is that if you fast foward to now... right in this moment... right this second... I want you to know that you've made a difference in my life because you're enjoying something that i've written. You're telling your friends and family to buy my book. You're recommending The Perfect Game to friends, strangers, neighbors, in coffee shop lines, on facebook, on twitter, etc.  You're CHANGING my life. 

I'll say it again.

YOU
ARE
CHANGING
MY
LIFE


Let it sink in. 

Please.

Just for a moment.

Or two.


Because I could never be where I am right now (an Amazon best seller, having made the USA Today and Barnes & Noble Best Seller list) without each and every one of you. And I would be lying if I didn't say that I wish this could last forever! Because honestly, I wish it would. :)

But as for now-  you've made my dreams come true. You've rewarded my hard work by believing in me, encouraging me, supporting me, and wanting MORE from me. For the first time since I started this crazy journey, I feel like a success. I feel like i'm doing something right. I feel like i'm right where i'm supposed to be.  And I AM SO THANKFUL for every one of you. Because I feel that way BECAUSE of you.

So, thank you... for every email, every facebook post and every tweet.  Thank you for everytime my book pops into your head to recommend to someone. Thank you for spreading the word about my little book that could. You believe in it, which means you believe in me. 

And that is more inspiring than I can ever put into words.

I appreciate you. 

xo

46 comments:

  1. well since you thanked us all a million and one times I have to be polite & say you're welcome....BUT, you shouldn't be thanking us so much, we should be thanking you!! For allowing us to read your wonderful story, for giving us a book worth posting about, worth thinking about, worth recommending to other book lovers!

    I have just recently become aware of indie writers like you and I feel like I'm all of a sudden a part of an exclusive club or something that I want EVERYONE I know to know about! Reading you work and stories from other wonderful indie authors has seriously brightened my life the past few months! Connecting with you guys and bloggers through facebook & goodreads has been great because I keep getting more amazing recommendations and I love every minute of it. When I stumbled upon Avoiding Commitment a few months ago I fell in love, then I had to know who the D-Bags were that I noticed everyone loving the reference of, when I read Thoughtless and Effortless I fell even more in love! I was like WOW, where are all these authors coming from!? By friending K.A.Linde & S.C.Stephens on fb I have been introduced to so many great authors like you. My to-read list has grown to over 200 because of all of the wonderful recommendations you all post on the daily! I think it is truly wonderful how you all support eachother's works and help spread the word...

    Ok anyways, that was a much longer rant than I had anticipated, so i'll shut up now, but thank you for sharing your story with us all! xo

    Ok...

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    1. you're awesome! And I think Indie Authors are where it's at! Aren't they amazing???? :) It is like a whole secret world that once you're in, you sorta never wanna leave! I mean, WHY would you? :)

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    2. I soooo agree! My reading list is 90% Indie Authors. It is so amazing to be able to interact with such great writers. Thank you for including us! Your stories are my escape and I could not survive without them!

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  2. Oh wow Jenn this is such an inspirational post! Thank you so much for sharing your story!! I really can not believe how horrible and insensitive people were at the start for you and I'm soooooo sorry you lost your house :( I know all to well what it's like to loose your home as our house was repossessed by the bank a few years back and at the time it was due to lack of work, partner loosing his job etc etc it felt like at the time it was the worst thing that had ever happened to us, but I also believe that everything happens for a reason and now we are happier than ever, my partner brother and I now run a successfull electrical company, it's been a long hard slog and it's hard work everyday but it is worth it to follow the dream and I'm so proud of my partner and brother for doing what they have always wanted.
    I'm so happy that things have now turned around for you Jenn, you soooooo deserve this and I will keep recommending every book you write. You are such a fantastic writer and Jack and Cassies story is fantastic! You always take the time to speak to your readers and have a laugh with us all despite how busy you may be!
    Keep following the dream Jenn, keep writing your amazing stories you have a talent and don't let anyone tell you any different! It takes a strong person to take risks and follow the dream well done you and I hope things keep going from strength to strength for you :)

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    1. i love you. seriously. i wish i could reach through my screen and hug you.

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    2. Cyber hugs ((())))))

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  3. OMG - you made me cry. Man I love you and your writing - Thank you for sharing with all of us.
    You truly are an inspiration. I am sorry about all the negatives - but like one of your quotes (one of my favorites!!!) "we're all scarred that's how we know we've lived a life worth fighting for"
    Thank you for your stories - they are AWESOME!!!

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    1. Eh,they aren't negatives- because look where i am right now! and that's ONE HUGE positive! :) :)
      Thank you alisa!

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  4. Awww...that's sweet! Thank you!

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  5. I love your guts. And I love that you didn't give up. I think it's so fantastic when authors can have major success straight out of the gate, but it's not common and it's impractical to think so.

    You stuck with it because you wanted to be a writer and you loved doing it. I'm so proud of you. Keep it up.

    You are loved. Not because of your success, but because of who you are.

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    1. MP! you were in my dream last night! you were flying- i swear, like a pixie- but delivering goodness everywhere you went. it was weird. but magical. lol thank you for your word. :)

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  6. Jenn, you are truly an AMAZING woman! You just poured your heart out to us. (tears have sprung) I applaud you, for the shitstorm you have gone through these past few years....and coming out on TOP. You deserve all of this crazy happiness and success. You've changed your readers too. Not only did I fall in love with Jack and Cassie, but I fell in love with you as an author. You are brilliant. You dug deep into your soul and found what you wanted to do with your life, you took control and voila here you are! ON FREAKING TOP!!!! Congratulations Jenn!! Keep on Keeping on! <3

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    1. and now i'm going to cry. lol thank you so much lisa. HUGS

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  7. Jenn- Thank you for being so open and honest. Not many people are willing to admit the struggles and financial challenges they face in the world today. All of your fans appreciate you and your work.

    I really hope to read more of your work, and maybe even continuing with Cassie and Jack's story. I recommend TPG to every one of my friends and just purchased Chance Encounters. I can't wait to start reading!! Keep up the great work and I look forward to supporting all of your future stories!

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    1. that means SO much to me tara... THANK YOU! :)

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  8. I SOOO feel you. Life was pretty rough before I published, too. And I never thought it would amount to anything. It has been amazing how my life has changed since. Really amazing. It's night and day.

    I love to see Indie rock those lists. Thanks for being one of those kicking the publishing world's ass. :)

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    1. AND YOU TOO!!!!! i'm SO proud and happy for you and all your success! i mean, REALLY! it's such an exciting time for you and i hope it's blowing your mind in the most positive way possible! :)

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    2. It's totally blowing my mind! :) Thank you!

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  9. Thanks so much for sharing--this is SO inspirational and speaks to me right now. I also believe things happen for a reason, like me clicking to this post. Or finding you in my hops around the blogosphere. I just got the perfect game--can't wait to sit down and read. :)

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    1. Thank you so much Coleen- it's funny the things we find right when we need them. :)

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  10. I have read all of your books and have loved them all. I really related to Jack and Cassie's story, because I too dated a pitcher through high school and most of college. I was hooked at the dedication. Athletes are fun to love, but hard to love all at the same time. That was my experience anyways. :) I love the way you write how someone would actually talk. You are an inspiration. Reading your stories and other indie authors I have decided to sit down and write, and that is something I haven't done in ten years. I look forward to reading more of your work. Thanks a bunch!

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    1. exactly! they are fun and HARD to love! it's hard to be #2 to something that doesn't love them back- no matter how hard they try to twist it and pretend it does. :)
      thank you so much for reading ALL of my books and enjoying them all. that means the world to me. :) xo

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  11. Love your books also. Those who have been there will tell you, "you have to hit rock bottom at times before the light shows you direction"..You have absolutely found your direction!! I've been there too. I love your posts for your sheer honesty. Your honesty makes you emotional senses come alive and your followers have felt that in your writings. Keep the chin up and keep up the writing. I'm thankful I have found a truely great author who knows how to grab my heart and allow me to fall in love with characters.

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    1. Thank you SO much diana! I appreciate everything you said- i'm blushing, you just can't see. lol :) xo

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  12. You're a doll. KEEP ON KEEPIN ON! And stop reading reviews.

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    1. LMFAO! I HAVE NO SELF CONTROL!!!! But i try. xo

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  13. Hon, you inspire me so much. You helped me make the decision to throw myself back into writing again and finish this novel. The fact you kept going when the going got tough just shows how amazing and strong you are. You write stories that blow me away and your characters are amazing. Sure, there will be people who will always be haters but you have so many people who love you and your words.

    P.S Jack is still a hot pig but he's our hot pig

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    1. nina! xoxoxoxoxoo you are the sweetest. i am SO happy that you are writing and NOT GIVING UP! :) :) i love you

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  14. Thanks for sharing Jenn. You are an inspiration to all of us to never give up on a dream and proving that every experience no matter whether it is good or bad can only make you stronger. I just love the indie authors that I have had the pleasure of getting to know through their books and fb. Discovering wonderful authors like yourself has ended my reading hiatus and thrown me into a reading frenzy. Thank you so much for persevering and believing in your intuition. :)

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! :) and i love your last line- you "get" it! :)

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  15. Thanks for sharing, and inspiring us bloggers to keep helping out great indie authors like yourself. It feels good to know that we make a difference in peoples lives! Keep it up Jenn! xo

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    1. oh girl, YOU KNOW WHAT'S UP! you indie book bloggers are AMAZING!!!!!!

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  16. Your story broke my heart! I totally understand the foreclosure process but I was blessed that we got the modification.. saving grace too many half million dollar houses foreclosing around us and we (spouse & I) had jobs.. Reading your post brought back those memories and the fear of losing my house but by the end I thought if I can feed my kids, clothe them and we are healthy we can live anywhere!!!

    SO happy you are living your dream! I loved The Perfect Game recommended to my sisters and they loved it! I have purchased both of your other books and I need to read those :) YOU ROCK!!! CONGRATS ON LIVING YOUR DREAM!!

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    1. It was really hurtful and horrible at the time- even when we KNEW the best thing would be to get out from under it. We tried. We tried hard.
      Oh well, right?
      Thank you SO much for reading TPG and loving it and recommending it to your sisters! I appreciate the word of mouth!!! :) xo

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  17. What an inspiraation you are! You are doing what you were meant to do and doing a hell of a job doing it! Congrats to you and your success! You have an amazing support system and we will all be here cheering you on! :) Looking foward to your future books!

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    1. Thank you so much missy!!! that is SO NICE to hear- and it's also exciting knowing that people are waiting for my next books. THANK YOU! :)

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  18. As usual, I'm late to the love-fest, however, better late than never. Anyway, I have this to say...

    I love you, J! You have a beautiful heart, and an incredibly beautiful soul. You are a no-holds-barred, take no shit from anyone woman, and I love that about you too! You DESERVE to be a bestseller on multiple lists, and you should be proud of yourself. I'll say it again, you DESERVE this! All of it! Without all the shit you've been through in the past 2 years, we readers wouldn't have 3 extremely beautiful stories to read from the mind of an outstandingly brilliant person. I hate, HATE that you had to experience a terrible low to raise up to this amazing high, but sometimes, it's the bottom that pushes us up to the top where we belong. You could have chosen to wallow in all that ugliness, but you didn't. You picked yourself up and you climbed right back up here to the top!

    I find myself inspired by you and all those indies like you! It's why I'm working my ass off to get something out there that might be complete crap, but at least I can say that I did it! It's mine and no one can take it away from me. What I'm trying to say is that you may feel obligated to thank your readers a million times, but some of us are in turn obligated to thank you too! So THANK YOU, J STERLING! Thank you for telling us how you got here, and for being brave enough to stare defeat in the face and tell it, "You will not beat me." Thank you for giving us In Dreams, Chance Encounters, and The Perfect Game, because some how, some way, they have inspired each and every one of us. And most of all, thank you for being who you are and telling people how it is.

    Just remember that I am always here for you, and I will ALWAYS have your back! It's like you said... Sometimes life gets ugly before it gets beautiful. Remember that, because your life is beautiful!!!

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  19. You.Are.Awesome.


    &&&

    I <3 you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Now hurry up and write Dean's story. You have fans waiting for it!

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  20. That didn't come in right...lol let me try it again.

    I <3 you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  21. I loved the Perfect Game and i so look forward to the Game Changer. I work for a middle school library where i must be honest i love YA books and i have to say yours is up there with my fav as the kids would say...Keep writing and write quickly. Your story brought tears to my eyes

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  22. Wow.. all i can say is what a truly amazing and inspirational person you are! I came across The Perfect Game by chance and was completely blown away.. literally as soon as I finished the book I just had to read it again.. now I have to read all of your other books and any book you ever write in you future career. It is obvious what a brilliant, passionate and gifted person you are, which comes to life through your writing. I wish you every success and hope you never stop writing books :-)..

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  23. Wow, congratulations..a couple years ago I stumbled across your blog, you were so funny, I was hooked..I followed you thru the house, your photography & cupcakes...then my life got to busy
    For blogging...tonight you crossed my mind and I was curious to see how life was going for you...HOLY CRAP Jen...your FAMOUS!!! Although I've never met you, I want you to know that you are a great inspiration for those of us reinventing ourselves...you look great & so happy...good Job!!!
    Julie

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  26. From one indie to another, you rock. It's so hard to take all the bad stuff thrown at you and turn it into roses. We'd be better served to not read reviews, but we're all human and can't seem to help ourselves. Readers have no idea how very important they are so I hope you all appreciate it when I writer truly says thank you. Congrats and good luck with your books

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