Montag, 17. Oktober 2016

SWEAR is actually coming!

If you're an Amanda Hocking fan, drop everything you're doing RIGHT now, for Heaven's sake!!! Aaaaaah!
When I came home from Uni this week and was just browsing through Facebook, trying to upload my pictures from The Agonist concert in Düsseldorf (read more about here) I let out a little scream when I saw this: 

Let's be clear though, little screams while scrolling through facebook are reserved for rare occasions such as: messages from band persons (sorry, but I AM a fangirl), freshly announced tourdates or... well, there has been so much clickbaiting about the Winds of Winter I don't even read the articles about it anymore...
So, yeah, I don't scream that often when I browse fb.

And when I saw that picture I actually first thought "Oh, great, Amanda has a new book coming soon, good for her." and then I scanned the post again. Nope, this isn't just any new book, this is the last book of the My Blood Approves series! Miracles do happen! Good things come to those who wait!

I need to give you some explanation why this makes me so happy. 
Back in 2011 I was working very hard on my first book, Green like me, which hasn't been released and it probably never will be. It's not ready for that. Anyway, back then it was the first time I've actually worked on a book that *might* be done one day and of course I wanted to know how to put it out there. Self Publishing was the newest fad on the internet back then. Actually, ebooks were quite a new thing. The first Kindle (the one with a keyboard) came out and yadda yadda. People were going crazy, everybody was so emotional. Refugees weren't a thing back then and no "threat" to "our" culture... but ebooks, those were the devil's children. Everything we've achieved as a human race would cease and vanish in the face of digital reading. Seriously, everybody went crazy. Maybe you remember. 
After moving in 2011 I realized that I owned a lot of books. And I still have three big cardboard boxes in my parent's attic full with books. I love reading. That year I realized, that I might not like books so much. A Kindle seemed like the perfect solution. I could still read and I wouldn't need to litter my apartment.  
I got myself a Kindle for Christmas that year. Best 100 bucks I've ever spent (yup, it actually was that pricey back then!)  
So, back to book publishing. Ebooks opened up a whole world of new possibilities that year. I started reading J.A. Konrath's blog like it was the Holy Bible and I was sure I would selfpublish if the day ever came. I don't think anybody took Kindle and their author program serious until a young girl hit the news: She had written a mediocre vampire romance, put it onto Kindle and became a millionaire. True story. That was Amanda Hocking and of course, her books were the first to be put onto my Kindle. I even named my Kindle Amanda after her (I name all my electric devices).
I was totally inspired by her story, so it wasn't about vampires falling in love and relationship triangles and the occasional bad guy trying to kill all of them for me. The books were fine for me, I didn't expect them to be high literature or anything, but they were good enough to entertain during lunch breaks and on public transport (where I spend most time reading). It was during that time that I started writing something else and decided to publish it - I will share that with you eventually. It was what had been easiest for me to write and I thought, that I should only write this story for myself and never share it with the public. Well, after reading My Blood Approves and thinking about the whole success story of Amanda Hocking, I changed my mind. I was sure that this should be the story that I have to focus on and get done, stopping that voice in my head that said "No! This isn't good enough!" "Write something more valuable" "Who wants to read that shit anyway?"
It was only now that I've found out that Hocking had pretty big troubles with selfdoubt after publishing the first four books in the series. She wrote in her recent blog post:

"When I first published the My Blood Approves series, I was a young sheltered writer self-publishing them with a lot of naive hope. I thought I was prepared for criticism. I expected reviews to say things like, “I really did not like this book. I thought it was dumb.” I was not at all prepared for essay-length reviews that eviscerated every part of my books and myself. [...]But I think reading so many negative reviews eventually led me to believe that it was true, that the books were total complete garbage, that they were the cause of everything wrong with the world, and their very existence was destroying humanity. SoI hated them. For awhile, I even considered unpublishing them, but I that would only make people angrier, so I left them alone, and basically, just tried to pretend like they didn’t exist, because in my mind, they were the worst things ever, and every time anybody mentioned them, it was really just bringing up the greatest shame of my life." 

(that basically being her excuse for not writing the final part of the series)

This gives me so much hope. I can relate to this so, so much. Why? Because I've struggled with my own writing before I even started most of the time. And hey, to be fair, Amanda could have said "Fuck it, this shit made me rich."
I really value her being so honest about her struggle. It shows me that I'm not alone in my writing journey.

And that's probably why I'm so happy about Swear. Not only do I want to know how the story ends (in my opinion, there weren't many things in my memory that needed to be wrapped up, but at this point I'm just along for the ride. I read the books 3x now because I just enjoy reading about Alice and Jack), I'm just so happy for Amanda to overcome all her doubts she has had with these books.
I know, this post is incredibly long and I doubt anyone will read it, but hey, I actually also blog for myself ;)

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