With a little over a month until my book publication, I am feeling overwhelmed. Many expectations surround the event: launch party, readings and signings, keeping up on social media, reviewing the work of fellow authors, and blogging. While I already have a stressful full-time job, it seems as though I’ve acquired another that is equally demanding. Of course, I tell myself not to go overboard, to do only what I have time for. But my own advice has flown out the proverbial window.

I didn’t feel overwhelmed when I was writing my memoir. In fact, my reaction was the polar opposite. Since I am also a poet, I welcomed the challenge to produce clear descriptive sentences and to create multi-dimensional characters and memorable scenes. I revised diligently as pages became chapters. And because I belonged to a writing class, I established deadlines for myself and stuck to them. The creative process was exhilarating.

So perhaps what I’m feeling now has more to do with the lack of power. After approving the cover and page layout, I turned the book over to the publisher. Soon it will be in the hands of readers and reviewers. I will anxiously await their responses and pray my skin will be thick enough to absorb comments that are not all that glowing.

However, nothing will dull the confidence and joy I’ve reaped in my writing life. I believe these will see me through the steamroller effect of publication. By poising my pen above my notebook and ultimately creating poetry and stories, I hope to steer myself once again toward a goal of satisfying hard work.