Sunday, May 25, 2014

Ten Years? Amazing!

by Leann

Even when I'm not keeping track of important dates, it seems the Internet is. I knew my son and daughter-in-law celebrated their 10th anniversary this year in May and didn't need a cyber reminder. That was a wonderful day, one I will never forget. But then someone posted on my timeline on Facebook congratulating me on ten years--and I had to stop and think. What anniversary is that?

Then I remembered.The same week my son and daughter-in-law were married was the week my first book came out from NAL/Signet. A lot went on in 2004! The book was the first in my Yellow Rose Mystery series, Pick Your Poison--a book I had been rewriting for ten years plus before it was finally picked up by a major publisher. I guess ten might be my lucky number.

2005 wasn't as kind. That's the year I finally learned why I was so exhausted, and why I would need to take early retirement from my nursing job. I had Lyme disease. I spent the next two years trying to get well, but sometimes the cure is worse than the disease. By 2007 I couldn't tolerate any more antibiotics or IV vitamins or shots of a little energy chemical we all need called ATP. For me, it just wasn't working.

I was frightened I wouldn't be able to write books anymore, and indeed, we had to push one book back several months while I was in treatment. But though the Lyme took my energy and my strength and at times nearly killed my spirit, it couldn't harm my imagination. Indeed, 10 is still my lucky number. My 10th book was published last year. And now I've made it one step further as #11 comes out this August.

We all have "something" as Robin Roberts so aptly put it in her new book, and the fighter in me wouldn't allow my "something" to steal what I loved most. So, happy anniversary to me and my writing career. And a big thanks to the editor who believed in my even when I was sick. She understood and nudged me to keep on writing. It has been my savior.