Five years ago today, my first book, What Happens in New York, went live.
Back then, I didn’t have a separate author site. The cover was different. Even some of the editing was different.
(I went back through it a few months later to fix some typos and other issues I’d missed.)
But the core of the book was there, and would go on to introduce me to thousands of readers all over the world.
It still amazes me that so many people have met Hollie and Fayth and enjoyed their adventures along with me.
I created them at a time when I felt lost, alone, and in need of a friend. And it feels amazing to know that so many others get that feeling from reading them, too.
Don’t get me wrong—I’ve had some awful reviews.
In fact, one of the earliest reviews said they ‘wouldn’t pay for it.’ And they promptly returned their copy. (I knew this because I sold so few in the US it was easy to track.)
The joke was on them three years later when I made the book permafree.
While it pained me to make my years of hard work free, it turned out to be a decision that would change my life.
From there, people continued to read the series, and it finally started to turn a profit.
It came at a bittersweet time, because the series took off three months after Nan passed away, when I was still in the throes of grief.
But I knew that she would’ve been proud of me, and she would’ve said something like, ‘I always knew you could do it, gal.’
Let’s party! (Sort of)
To celebrate, I’m hosting a Facebook Live birthday party later. It would be amazing if you can join me.
(If you’ve got any questions, stick them in the comments in here or on Facebook and I’ll answer them live 🙂 )
If you’re reading this after 26 May 2021, you’ll still be able to watch the replay 🙂
I couldn’t have gotten here without the help of readers like you. Your support—whether that’s reading the books, reviewing them, or recommending them to a friend—makes a huge difference to this little author’s career.
I’ve still got a long way to go—I’m by no means pretending I can pay my bills from my books, but I can at least keep Millie in treats and cover my book costs—but reflecting on the journey is an important part of the process. It’s easy to lose sight of how much things have changed in five years, but wooooow, have they changed.
Oof. Getting emotional there.
I’ll stop before I get weepy. Just know that I really appreciate your support and would love to celebrate with you tonight on the live <3