Blog-versary Author Post & Giveaway: Sloan Parker, Creativity, Disappointment, and Rediscovering the Joy of Writing

Creativity, Disappointment, and Rediscovering the Joy of Writing.

By Sloan Parker

Thank you, Kazza and Cindi, for inviting me to your blog-versary celebration. I always love being a part of this event. Congratulations on another awesome year with the site! Your love and support of gay romances is wonderful and greatly appreciated.

At this time of the year, I’m usually looking back over what I’ve accomplished so far and sloan-parker-blog-verary-postmaking plans for what projects I want to complete by the end of the year. I had some big plans for 2016. It went something like this: finish the second Haven book, revise More book 3, possibly get started on the new four-book series I had previously outlined, release a collection of my shorter works, which included two new short stories, and look into foreign translations for at least one or two of my self-published titles.

Ambitious for me, but I wanted to push and challenge myself in new ways where my career was concerned.

That isn’t exactly how 2016 has been turning out for me.

In addition to some family-related issues, the two short stories I wanted to write took longer than expected. Then I had to take unplanned breaks from the Haven #2 to let the ideas percolate. So much time, in fact, that I ended up forcing myself to work on other projects, as well as spend more time simply reading and filling my creative well. When I would get back to the story, I had to re-envision and revise large chunks of it. I had to make cuts and rework the tone and character motivations in places where I thought I had things nailed. I had to have long talks with my characters, find out who they really were when I thought I knew them as well as I knew myself.

Although maybe I didn’t know myself like I thought I did, my writer self that is. Maybe I never will. Everything in life is a journey, and we are, all of us, forever learning and growing. Being a published novelist doesn’t change that, and doesn’t automatically mean that I know all I need to know about the process of writing or the exploration of fictional ideas and characters.

Over the past six months, I often felt frustrated and tired and isolated. Some days I wanted to scream. Some days I wanted to hide. I avoided social media and all things author-related. My heart was heavy, and I felt stuck.

At times I wanted to give up and throw in the towel. (Thankfully those were short-lived moments, and I kept pulling out that manuscript day after day.)

Then, months past the date I had hoped to have this book completed, I realized all those book-quote-1changes I was plugging away on were actually turning my second Haven book into the story I always wanted it to be.

So I celebrated, high on that joyful moment in the process of writing where I could see everything coming together, where I would read through chapter after chapter and was unable to stop grinning.

It felt great.

No, it felt amazing.

Then I moved on to revise the next chapter. And I was stuck again. Something was wrong. I needed to rework another section of the story. More time. More reading and reviewing and reworking. More disappointment.

That’s when it hit me… It was long past time to have a serious talk with myself.

No one said this would ever be easy. No one said every project would flow the same. No one said I wouldn’t have an off month here and there.

Do I want to be able to say I released “x” number of books this year? Or do I want to be able to say I that I’m proud of the stories I wrote, that each of those works culminated in what I’d envisioned for the characters and their stories?

Many times, creative people can achieve both high levels of productivity as well as spurts of beautiful creativity. But sometimes a writer has to sacrifice one for the other. For me, that was a hard lesson to learn. And getting past that disappointment was painful, sometimes physically so. Yet once I did get past it, or better yet embraced it, I learned to find the joy in writing again.

I absolutely love these characters. I love the way they care, the way they love, the way they interact and never give up. I love who they are becoming, and what their story has had to teach me.

With this book, I’ve had some of my biggest writing highs and personal triumphs. I should not let the more difficult moments suck that joy away from me.

My wife always says I put more pressure on myself than anyone else could. Perhaps she’s right. Perhaps learning how to let go of that pressure and enjoy the process again is what 2016 is all about for me.

After all, over the past year I’ve really gotten into simplifying my home and my life in so many other areas. Perhaps it was time to simplify my writing life as well, or better yet, simplify how I react to the ups and downs of writing for publication.

So as I sit down to my laptop today and see what Vargas and Seth have to say next, I happily enjoy the journey of discovery, of romance and love. I hope readers will too when they get the chance to read this story.

Blog Reviews

GIVEAWAY NOW OVER. CONGRATULATIONS TO KATHI.

**Giveaway**

Winner’s choice of three backlist e-books in their preferred format, as well as a $10 gift card to All Romance eBooks. Simply leave a comment below for a chance to win. Giveaway finishes October 18th (Midnight US EST) Good luck and thank you for stopping by.

Some excellent books by Sloan Parker: Cover is a Link

 

MOREMore Than Mosthow-to-save-a-lifebreatheTake Me Homefor-love-and-forever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author Bio:

Sloan Parker

Award-winning author Sloan Parker writes passionate, dramatic stories about two men (or more) falling in love. Sloan enjoys writing in the fictional world because in fiction you can be anything, do anything…even fall in love for the first time over and over again. She lives in Ohio with her wife and their neurotic cats where her greatest moments in life are spent with her family, her friends, and her characters. You can learn more about Sloan and her writing at :
http://www.sloanparker.com/

Goodreads

Amazon Page

 

 



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37 Comments on "Blog-versary Author Post & Giveaway: Sloan Parker, Creativity, Disappointment, and Rediscovering the Joy of Writing"

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Cindi
Admin

As readers we don’t always see what goes on in the background as the stories we love are being created. “Everything in life is a journey, and we are, all of us, forever learning and growing,” stands out for me because it’s true. We’re always learning and growing.

Thank you to Sloan Parker for the great post and giveaway and for being part of our 4th anniversary celebration. I’ve been a fan since I read More way back when (my first full-length novel in the genre) and it’s always special to have you stop by.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Thanks so much, Cindi. Really glad you enjoyed the post, and I appreciate being included in your celebration. I hope this next year brings you and Kazza lots of fun with the blog and a slew of new books to enjoy. Thanks for all you do!

Jen CW
Guest

Thank you for the fantastic post and giveaway chance! I have More on my TBR and the rest of Sloane’s books are on my wishlist. They sounds so good!
Jczlapin@gmail.com

Sloan Parker
Guest

You’re welcome, Jen CW. Thanks for stopping by and checking it out.

susana
Guest

Thank you for the post, Sloan. I do agree, sometimes you have to stop and reconsider your goals… Everybody goes through those rough years when you have to make tough decisions. I’m going through one of those myself right now, really considering a big change because my job makes me unhappy…. Anyway, I know your troublesome book is going to be great, as all of them always are.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Sorry to hear you’re having a rough year, Susana. It’s miserable to be stuck in a job that makes you unhappy every day. I hope you are able to find one that fulfills you and brightens your life. Thanks for checking out the post and for the kind words about my writing.

Shirley Ann Speakman
Guest

I enjoyed the post and it interesting hearing about your writing it’s always seems so easy to set goals but so easy for them not to be met. Sloane I sure wife is right you are too hard on yourself and as a reader I appreciate all the wonderful books you have publsished.

ShirleyAnn(at)speakman40(dot)freeserve(dot)co(dot)uk

Sloan Parker
Guest

Glad you enjoyed the post, Shirley Ann. Thanks so much for the kind words of support!

Christie Curtis
Guest

I think Sloan Parker should be proud of the books she has written and the character development within each one. She is right, it isn’t about the number of books (though we would like as many of her books to read as possible) but the quality of them and this is reflected in her work. Cannot wait for the Seth and Vargas book, to see how Seth is coping with his ordeal, already feel very invested in his character!

Sloan Parker
Guest

That was very sweet of you to say, Christie. Thank you! I’m thrilled to hear you are looking forward to the Haven #2.

Jen B.
Guest

I’m so excited that Haven #2 is on the way! I agree that quality of quantity is important but as a fan I want more, more, more!

Sloan Parker
Guest

Thanks, Jen B. That made me smile.

Lee
Guest

Raising my little ole hand for this giveaway and hunnies, this is a fantabulous post for us readers. I’ve sometimes wondered what it’d be like to write because it’s gotta be hard to do it often and do it right. Thanks <3

Sloan Parker
Guest

Hi Lee. Writing for publication is definitely one of the most challenging things I’ve done, but also the most rewarding. I’d rather spend a frustrated day writing than do most anything else. (sounds a little twisted, doesn’t it?)

Lisa
Guest

Thanks for the post & giveaway. I’m glad you were able to find the joy in writing again. *waves at fellow Ohioan*

Sloan Parker
Guest

You’re welcome, Lisa. *waves back to fellow Ohioan* Thanks so much for the lovely comment.

Lee Rey
Guest

Excited for Haven #2!

Sloan Parker
Guest

Yay! Love hearing that, Lee. Especially with all the ups and downs of this project.

Allen
Guest

enjoyed the chance to get to know the Author a little better! Looking forward to reading her books.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Thanks, Allen. Appreciate you stopping by.

Jen
Guest

Thanks for the post! I am glad that your difficulties resulted in a book you are proud and some realizations that might help you in the future. I know the feeling of putting more pressure/expectations on yourself than other people do and it can take another person to make you see what you are doing.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Well said, Jen. Sometimes we are too close to our own day-to-day experiences to see them objectively. Thanks for the kind words and for stopping by the check out the post.

Natalie
Guest

I’m glad you’re finding the balance you need. What I like connecting with authors for, is getting to know them as people. Learning how their real life and the writing process don’t always cooperate! I’d like to think you’re all hunched over your desks writing madly for hours! I’ll just be happy to read anything that you feel happy publishing.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Thanks so much, Natalie. Appreciate the kind words. I had one of those writing-like-mad days yesterday. It felt great.

Kathi
Guest
Thanks for the chance. As a slightly obsessive reader of just about anything I can get my hands on, I know that we are all hanging out desperately waiting for the next book in our favourite series, or from our favourites authors, etc…… but we do appreciate that sometimes it must be so hard for authors to live up to our high hopes and expectationsall the time. You are only human and sometimes just need to take a step back, regroup, and re-evaluate things. I’m so glad to hear that you have found your happy place where you can write… Read more »
Sloan Parker
Guest

Thank you, Kathi. It’s really nice to hear that perspective from readers. I know how frustrated I get as a reader when I’m waiting for a book in one of my fave series. Thanks for stopping by and checking out the post.

Juli-Anna Dobson
Guest

I’m so excited to hear about a third More book. The first too are still my go to MMM books and are the first ones I recommend when asked. It’s always interesting to hear from authors on their process and how sometimes how you think things will happen doesn’t.

Sloan Parker
Guest

Really lovely to hear that, Juli-Anna. Thank you. I can’t wait to share more with Matthew, Luke, and Richard (especially in Matthew’s point-of-view). Thanks so much for recommending the books to others!

Deb B
Guest

Life can throw monkey wrenches in the works. 2016 hasn’t been the best year but I always know it could be worse so I’m thankful for what I have. 🙂

I’d prefer to wait for a quality book over mass produced writing every time. xx

Sloan Parker
Guest

What a great perspective to have, Deb. I hope the rest of your 2016 is filled with much happiness and love.

Angela
Guest

Life sure can throw some things our way when we least expect them, sometimes they are beautiful and sometimes they are not but it keeps things interested and life so worth living 😉 Thank you for sharing this post with us.

Sloan Parker
Guest

So true, Angela. Thanks for sharing that. Life would be pretty boring if everything always turned out exactly as we expected.

Serena S.
Guest

Thanks for the post and letting know how book 2 is going. I loved How to Save a Life and look forward to book 2. I’m sure when it’s ready it will be amazing. =)

Sloan Parker
Guest

You’re welcome, Serena. Thank you for the support about book 2! I really can’t wait to share Seth’s story with everyone. I just adore him and Vargas together.

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