Why bury the lede? Launch Day of The Anchor of Time will be on December 1st, 2020. Sign up for Bella’s Cosmic Newsletter to get a reminder when Pre-Order goes live and for other book and publishing announcements!
How I got here…
It is a little surreal to be here, as all you writers know this is a time you dream about—as you type away, alone at your key board. I knew that it would eventually happen, if I just kept at it…
The #writingcommunity on Twitter and Instagram has been fun—getting to know other writers online and that even though we work alone there is a vast network of awesome people, just as nerdy and into their work as me!
I’ve also taken a class here and there on writing, as well as participated in writing challenges like the #stevenkingwritingchallenge which was introduced to me by my #writingfriend Lio, as well as Nanowrimo and Camp Nanowrimo. Though I’ve never successfully completed a novel through the challenge, I have gotten a better writing practice because of my participation. Consistent dedication and practice is what helps get you from the first page to the final page of your manuscript…
Yup, you heard right. Writing takes practice, and writing a book takes an entire book to practice. I think I have been in school since I put my first line down back in 2014. I have an excerpt from that first paragraph from that early draft:
“Daylight vanished on ghost feet.
The city stood, a twilight kingdom, as the day retreated. Stretching and
pausing in windowsills and thresholds, the light briefly lingered. It was
the golden hour.”
Not gonna lie, that paragraph still gets me back to right were I was when I wrote that first line in 2014. I wrote 30 pages the first time I sat down to write TAOT and loved every minute of it. Something within me is a storyteller, always has been. Even with my artwork, there is always a back story to the image—nothing exists alone. I always included context, and back story. Raconteuse over here!
My first word was ‘book’
So much about publishing feels like destiny fulfillment and walking down a path I have been yearning to walk on to for so long.
I think taking six years to complete your first novel lends a lot of perspective! It has been a long wait, but that time was well spent. I helped raised my step-sons, and finished my first draft living under one roof with them for the first time. I remember distinctly writing my final sentence on the manuscript the summer Michael Phelps won his umpteenth gold medal in Rio. I remember watching him swim down his lane, as my fingers flew across my keys. I worked at the salon in those days, and wrote in every spare moment I got when I was not behind the chair.
I took a year off in 2018 to get married and buy a house. I submitted, agentless, to a publishing house before we moved–figuring I didn’t have time to work on it anyway to they might as well have a crack at it while I did important life things… They rejected it, but gave some great notes and to be honest, it was not ready then. After my life settled down I picked it back up and read it cover to cover. That version was awful! How embarrassing, I had even submitted that to a publisher! I rewrote 2/3 of it in 2019 and got it professionally edited (twice) and was planning on publishing in May of 2020, but then Covid…
My life from before the pandemic is very different to the life I have now. I have more time for writing, but I have had to make difficult desicions and reoriented my priorities. I think the pandemic did that for a lot of folks. Now, I am a full time writer, and have another part-time #retiredstylist gig. It is pretty surreal to think of how different my life is from last March–and even though I have worked so hard to get here, I know I am lucky, and privelaged to be where I am.
And if anything the wait has made the manuscript even stronger and will hopefully make the payoff of seeing my story in print at long last all that sweeter.
This version takes my breath away, the grand scale of it, the romance, the time travel…
Shout and thanks my wonderful husband, my best friend, partner, web designer, and number one fan Adam. Thank you for everything xoxo