Hi! My name is Tiffany Amber Stockton, and Karin has graciously invited me here to ramble a bit. One of the most frequent questions asked of me is when I first started to write. The answer is always the same: I’ve been writing as far back as I can remember. From little sketches or invented plays to short stories and princess tales, my writing has always been a part of my life.
But it wasn’t until I graduated college that I began pursuing writing as a professional career. It took me about seven years of attending conferences, studying the craft, reading books on writing, and networking with other industry professionals before I received that long-desired phone call telling me a publisher wanted to buy my book! Finally, a dream I’d had since childhood had come true. I was a published author, and I’d have a glorious career in the writing industry.
All right, all right. Stop the presses. 🙂 So, it isn’t all glory, and it certainly doesn’t come with instant success. In fact, just seven months after I signed my first contract, I got married and moved 2000 miles west across the country to live with my husband. Still, I wrote. My first book released in January 2008, and in July that year, I learned I was pregnant with our first child. Still, I wrote. Books 2 and 3 released that year as well, and I signed another 3-book contract for a second series. The first in that set released just one day before my daughter was born. Still, I wrote.
There were diapers to be changed, a baby to feed, a house to manage, errands to run, and anything else life threw my way. Still, I wrote. Oh, and did I mention my home business in the anti-aging skin industry? That’s what I do to help pay the bills in between the contracts and royalties, which are sporadic and don’t last as long as I’d like. Still, I wrote.
In July 2010, I learned we were expecting baby number two, and our daughter was a vivacious toddler who required almost constant attention. Still, I wrote. I signed another 3-book contract for a series which released in 2011, and I’ve had 13 books come out so far. My current book releases this month and my next book releases in February 2015. Still, I write.
The second most common question I’m asked is how I handle it all. See, the majority of authors are at least a decade or more older than I, and most of them have teenage or older children who have moved out of the house. Me? I’m in my late 30’s with a full-time home-based business, a writing and speaking career, and two munchkins at home with me all day. Still, I write.
Why? Because writing to me is like breathing. I can’t not do it. And how do I manage it all? One day, and sometimes one hour or one minute at a time. Am I always successful? Not a chance! But I don’t give up. As God promises, each day brings a fresh start. His mercies are new every morning. I rely on that promise, and I use His strength to help me when mine is all tapped out. I know I’m not alone in this journey, and I know there are other writers in similar circumstances. Me? I feel extremely blessed to have been called on this incredible journey. And even if I only touch one reader’s life, everything leading up to that will have been worth it.
As Erma Bombeck once said, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say, ‘I used everything you gave me.’” That’s exactly what I hope to say when I stand before the Lord one day as well. So, despite the whining, the sibling arguments, the fighting, the protests, the time demands, the deadlines, the pressure, and the chaos that sometimes descends…still, I write.
Thanks so much, Karin, for having me here. And those of you visiting, thanks for dropping by. If you’d like to check out my latest release, you can learn all about A Grand Design at my web site (www.amberstockton.com).
Tiffany Amber Stockton has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood. Today, she is an award-winning author and speaker who has partnered with Nerium International (stutas07.theneriumlook.com) in the anti-aging industry, helping others look younger and live better. She lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have one girl and one boy, and an Aussie/retriever mix named Roxie. She has sold fourteen books so far and is represented by agent Sandra Bishop. You can also find her on Facebook (www.facebook.com/AuthorAmberStockton) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/AmberStockton) as well as her web site (www.amberstockton.com).