Happy book birthday Cruz!


When I first penned the outline for “Saving Cruz”, I never could have imagined how my life would change simply by doing so. Sure, I’d published two other books prior to Cruz’s story. That experience – working with a company to self-publish my work – didn’t exactly leave me feeling positive about the whole process. At the time, I knew only that I had to get his story down on paper. The rest – as they say – is history.

Cruz’s 2 year book birthday is rather bittersweet for me. This series…which originally started as a stand-alone book, ballooned into a 5-part book series once I began to write his story. Over the course of two years following Cruz’s release, I introduced you to each of his siblings: the crass and enigmatic Marco. The sweet and endearing Roman, followed by sister Bella’s story of triumph over tragedy. And just this past August, baby sister Sophia was released to the world, bringing this series to a close.

I’ve learned a lot about the writing process in the two years since Cruz’s story was released. I’ve also learned a lot about self-publishing, social media, and the time-sucking process that is marketing your own work. It’s not fun, and there have been many times I’ve wanted to throw in the towel and just write. Forget the marketing, the editing process, the endless search for the perfect cover designer. Bringing a story to life for the public is a lot of work. It’s very expensive and there’s little if no revenue. Regardless of what the future holds, I will never stop writing. I may only share my work with my mom, but I will continue to write. How can I not, when the characters and their stories weigh heavily in my head until I get the words down on paper.

Every writer I know has a big dream of seeing their work flourish, but the reality is that most of us will only sell a handful of books (mostly to our friends and family), yet we will continue to endeavor to share our art because we feel we have to. As I’ve said before, writing is a calling. You don’t just wake up one day and decided to do it….nor do you wake up one day and decided NOT to do it.

I’ve slowed down considerably since that October release two years ago. I no longer publish a weekly blog (only twice a month now). I’m not sending two and three manuscripts to my editor each year. In 2017 I released 3 books. In 2018, just one. I’d love to say that I plan on releasing more than 1 next year. We shall see…

To all the readers out there who took a chance on a driven, complicated man like Cruz Moran, I thank you. I thank you for sticking with me and reading the subsequent books in the series. I thank you for loving my little family just as much as I do. And I thank you for hanging in there through all the highs and lows of the past few years. I’ve said it before, but it’s worth saying again….YOU are the reason I do what I do. I’m so grateful. And so very, very blessed.

~AJ

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