Remember that old song from Kenny Rogers? You got to know when to fold 'em, when to walk away?
That's my writing career in a nutshell. I'm terrified my writing career is over.
I haven't had a book release since 2018. I'm still writing, but the industry is just stalled and no one seems to know why. It just...is.
Meanwhile, Netflix and Amazon are putting any damn thing on TV and I'm over here, waving my arms like a windmill screaming, "I HAVE STORIES FOR YOU!"
I am still writing. I wrote a romantic suspense with series potential. I wrote a YA Christmas rom/com. I'm currently adapting SEND (my debut novel) into a school play. And I'm writing a YA horror I hope to self-publish. In fact, I'd hoped to have it available by Halloween this year, but life got in the way.
That brings me to fear #2. My health. I have psoriatic arthritis, a painful and degenerative autoimmune disease. Since July, I've been in a state of flare, with random inflammation attacking all over my body. It's not just the skin rash. I've had pinched nerves, vestibular migraines and vertigo so profound, I could not lift up my head without vomiting. I've been on prednisone, a steroid, since July, which makes me gain weight. I'd been prediabetic for years and keep trying to lose weight, but the prednisone makes that impossible. A few weeks ago, I learned I'm now diabetic, too. And I'm still on prednisone. All of these health problems really cut into my writing.
I am so scared I will never feel better.
I have a birthday next month. My mom died back in 2012 and ever since she passed, I keep this ridiculous count down in my head. "Just fifteen more years until you're the same age Mom was when she died."
Next month, it will be fourteen years.
It sounds like such a long time.
I have stories to write. I want to see my sons marry and meet my grandchildren. I want to see my stories adapted to screen or stage. I want to see my stories hit bestseller lists. I want, desperately, to be healthy.
I may never see any of these things actually happen and the temptation is there, so strong, it practically has its own pulse. Just put the pen down.
Watch some game shows. Eat the damn sugar. Close your eyes!
But if I succumb, I may not have even those fourteen years.
And that's the scariest thought of all.