Sigh. How I’d love to post a super-upbeat-über-happy message, but my frustrating day has dampened my spirits.

I’ve said a lot of this before, but I’ve got a few new readers now, and they may not know some of this.

First of all, I do want to thank my street team, vocal fans and new readers. Because of you, yes, Emi Lost & Found is getting some attention. It’s wonderful to see the readers chime in on polls or opinion questions, and it’s flattering to receive messages from emotional fans as they make their way through the series. Your devotion to the books (and to me) means so much.

That being said, buzz doesn’t equal sales. I’d hoped it would, but this time around, it doesn’t. I don’t feel like I have that many readers in comparison to most (my sales ranking and reviews would attest to that), but maybe the market – my market – is already saturated with my books… or maybe people are reading them without buying them, I don’t know. Whatever the reason, I will not be able to quit my day job on my birthday like I’d hoped. I’m not dwelling on it anymore. It is what it is.

But, yes, I have a day job. I work for a company, overseeing the service desk that helps our employees with their computers and tablets and phones. I work 8-5 Monday through Friday, and I have to be ‘on-call’ every other week to answer questions from our agents after hours. (Fortunately, we don’t get many calls.) My immediate manager left last month, and one of my co-supervisors left a few months before. My team-size more than doubled, as did my workload. I’m stressed most of the time. On top of that, we don’t have the best vacation policy, so I have to save days for sick time.

I’ve gotten a lot of requests from readers to go to various signings across the country, and I’ve committed to two in 2014: one in Cleveland in April, and another in St. Louis in September. I’m really looking forward to both, and I hope to meet some new readers in both cities. Both of these trips are already straining my budget and my vacation time… so any more won’t be added to the schedule unless something significant changes with sales.

I’m also getting a lot of questions about when the next book will come out… and honestly, I don’t know. The first draft of OLIVIA was finished more than a year ago, but I’m not happy with a lot of it. With my job and all of the after-hours promoting I have to do, I’m finding it very difficult to get into the heads of my characters. Editing Olivia is daunting to me now, and every day I don’t work on it, I feel further removed from the character and her story. It breaks my heart. It depresses me. It’s a vicious cycle.

Anyway. I don’t mind when y’all ask questions, but I’m tired of saying ‘no’ and ‘I don’t know’ because I feel like I’m letting everyone down. I’m already letting myself down, so forgive me if I don’t answer.

More than anything, I want to write. Second to that, I want to go out and meet the people who’ve touched MY life by reading my books. Right now, though, there seem to be a lot of barriers that seem insurmountable to me. I’m trying my best, though. I promise I am.

Please be patient with me… and thank you so much for reading. 🙂

P.S. I’m hoping dinner with my friends will cheer me up a bit. Maybe I’m just having a really bad day.