After 20-years in retail fashion, I left life in the corporate offices of a luxury retailer and moved to sunny California, armed, pretty much, with a desire to change my life and an idea for a mystery series. That was 2007. The truth was, I didn't know how well it was going to work out. The only thing I knew was I needed for everything to be completely different in order to shake myself out of the routine I'd settled in.
I worked on that idea, joined Sisters in Crime, met other authors, and started putting my work out there. Two years later, that manuscrip, won the RWA Get Your Stiletto in the Door contest.
Huh. I left a career where I'd been a shoe buyer and I won a contest called "Get Your Stiletto in the Door." That was a sign, right?
I buckled down, continued looking for a agent, and submitted a short story to an anthology. It was accepted, and the collection was published in 2011. My first publication credit!
I wrote more than one book. More than one series. More than one genre. But I just wasn't getting that elusive break.
You know that feeling when you know you can do something, but the rest of the world hasn't gotten on board yet? That was me. So I started Polyester Press and made plans to self-publish my first mystery. What I didn't know was that a pre-press copy of that book had been forwarded to a senior editor at a publishing house who liked it enough to ask if I had other ideas.
I'd learned a thing or two by this point, things about doors closing and windows opening, so I jumped at the invitation to submit to them. From there came new series: Material Witness, Costume Shop, Outer Space, and Mermaids.
My advice to you: don't be afraid to take the road less traveled or to make the decision nobody else would make. None of us can predict the future and it's exciting to shake things up every now and then!
There are distractions, roadblocks, and challenges everywhere. The only thing we can control is what we do; it's up to us to shift, adapt, move forward, or stand still.
Here's to not standing still!
P.S. if after reading that you feel like we're kindred spirits, then sign up for my newsletter! Click the envelope. (you'll get a couple of awesome goodies if you do.) Go on, I'll wait.