Best Science Fiction Series according to the Texas Association of Authors. That was the award for my first three books in the Host series starting with Future Discovered. Was I surprised? Yes. How did it feel? After a lot of work, it was great to have some solid recognition. I think that many new authors wonder how their work will be received. Secretly, I think they feel (as I did) that their work just can’t measure up to all those great books that have come before. Many of us have guarded expectations even though we work hard. I don’t mind telling you that it is a real boost for an award like this to come along. It may not have been a NYT Best Seller, but it felt like it.
Another thing that happens when something like this comes along is that we now have a higher bar set for ourselves. It makes us work even harder on the next book. I can honestly say that was the case for New Horizons, Book 4 in the Host Saga which comes out on December 1st.
I wrote, re-wrote and wrote again. My principal editor, Tammy Salyer, ravaged the first draft and nearly did the same on the second look. So, I worked more and I’m glad I did. When I was done, author Danielle Vann had me submit New Horizons to Readers’ Favorite and then to Midwest Book Review. Again, my expectations were guarded. I had never done this before. The first review came in at 5 Stars. Had to be a fluke, right? Then the second one came in at 5 Stars. Then the third, fourth and fifth ones came in. All 5 Stars! Forget about the Best Science Fiction Series, this was even better!
But, what about the Midwest review? It was slow to come in and I started to worry … again. Finally, it arrived from D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer for Midwest Book Review. And it was a good one! Imagine the smile on my face … along with the relief. Of course, the real sign of good work is when people start buying and reading the books. So far, New Horizons has been on pre-order with Amazon and orders are coming in from all over. The real proof of success, however, will be seeing the reader reviews! If . . . no, when you order the book, please review it on Amazon and Goodreads!
So, am I now satisfied? Have I reached the ultimate achievement level? No! The bar has been raised higher again! That makes the next book, Dark Enemy, even more of a challenge.
How have you enjoyed the series so far?