Tax day! I have never, ever been so glad for my accountant. Every time I see her I want to hug her. She’s bemused by this, of course–mostly, people see her as the bearer of bad news around this time of year. For me, however, she’s saving me from hours and hours of stress my stomach is not equipped to handle, and worth every (tax-deductible, as a professional expense!) penny I pay. If you’re a writer in my area, I highly recommend her entire office. It’ll save you time you can use for more writing, that’s for damn sure. Or for plotting the downfall of your enemies. Whatever works.
Today’s morning is for revision work on Ruby’s story–one more pass before we go into CEs and proofs. I’ve received assurances that KIN will indeed be published, so that’s good. The first rough chunk of the Fireside serial is resting with the editor, and this afternoon will probably be for another chunk of it and at least one session with Rattlesnake Wind.
My crisis of career confidence, springing from two series abruptly showing bad numbers, proceeds apace. Part of me wants to say people just didn’t understaaaaaand the fairy-tale retellings, but every time I see a writer say that I cringe internally because the fault lies with the writer, right? My bad. I thought they were good when I finished them. Some parts I thought were flat-out great, I was growing as a writer and Trying New things…but it wasn’t what people wanted, I guess. There’s some comfort in chalking a bit of it up to “I’m just not a mainstream writer”, but that comfort is erased by the fact that I honestly thought Cami and Ellie and Ruby had fucking fantastic stories and I was just the person to tell them…and I was maybe very wrong.
Oh well, live and learn.
As for Bannon & Clare petering out, well, in my humble opinion steampunk isn’t a genre, it’s an aesthetic, and the market of an aesthetic gets saturated really quickly. (For those asking, don’t worry, the Ripper Affair IS coming out, you can preorder it.) I’m endlessly glad that my Orbit editor is always open, honest, and flexible when it comes to my work, and that she believes in me so strongly. That belief is an anodyne on days I don’t feel so well.
In the end, this is a temporary thing. Every writer’s career has points like this, and my own is a mild case compared to some stories of “career bed-death” I’ve heard on loops and during some extremely honest barcons. I’m still making the mortgage and I still have the best Readers ever. (That’s YOU, my chickadees.) So it’s been nice to wallow, but I’m back at work now, determined, in Louisa May Alcott’s words, to “take Fate by the throat and shake a living out of Her.” Every other part of writing for a living has been about endurance, outliving and out-stubborning the forces arrayed against one.
This, indeed, is no different.
Over and out.
 The part of a convention where writers converge on the bar and in vino veritas begins.