So Close to Surrender: Deadlines and Supporters

So, 2-months ago This almost happened:

Title: “Self-Publishing Amateur Hour”
Date: Friday, May 24, 2013

My friends,

With a heavy heart I must announce a brief delay in the release of Stronghold. Much to my chagrin and shame, I will be unable to meet my expected deadline of May 28, 2013.

I must admit that this has been an altogether humbling experience for me, but I would rather accept a strike to my ego than release a product that was not fully ready. I am deeply sorry for disappointing you all. As a man who believes his “‘yes’ should be ‘yes'” and his “‘no’ should be ‘no'”, I recognize that this failure to deliver my product on time is a direct reflection on both my character and my competence. I truly hope that the extra time spent over the next few days allows for a final version better than the one that would have been available on Tuesday.

Once the text has gone live, I will update you accordingly. Thank you for your patience, and again, my sincere apologies,

Yes, this almost happened.

But it didn’t. This post never left the draft phase.


My wife stopped me from posting it, and I am so thankful that she did. In fact, after encouraging me to stay firm in my resolve to release the book as promised, she completed a five-hour marathon of reading the back half of the book in its entirety (a stunning achievement, to be sure), so that I would have time all day Saturday to make last minute edits and submit for pre-approval before going live Tuesday.

So why am I telling you this? Two reasons. First, to draw attention to how awesome my wife is and also encourage you to make sure your writing is not conducted in a vacuum. Share with others your goals, your dreams, and–with a select few (your blog readers, perhaps), your deadlines. Make them promises that you can keep, and invite them to hold you to them. You may be amazed at the response and support you receive. And perhaps, near the end of all things, when you have burned the candle at both ends and worked beneath the moon itself for some semblance of light in the wee evening hours reading the printed proof of your magnum opus, someone will come beside you and give you that last push you need to complete your project and stay awake until the dawn. That being said, bring others–a select few, trusted others–into your journey.

Second, note the date; I was 4 days from my deadline, and I was ready to quit. Just 4 days. So close, and yet so overwhelmed with the last few nuggets of work. Deadlines do that to a person. They are psychologically powerful. They make you feel the weight of time like a burden strapped to your back, and each step, no matter how small, feels that much more difficult than it might without the stressor looming on you, taxing your faculties. Do not let the deadline win. You can meet it; you can beat it, and you can take satisfaction in the fact their drain on your mental energies did not break your spirits. You may be reading this in the midst of a project yourself, with a deadline you must meet–maybe you’ve only told one other person, but it’s out there, and you don’t want to let him, her, or yourself down. Don’t. You can do it. If I did it; you can do it. The feeling of meeting a deadline is rewarding, and it’s worth that exhausted final push to do so.

So that’s it. I want you to succeed, and I am showing you just how close I came to failure (at least in terms of my release schedule). The book received the proof-reading it needed. The necessary edits were made, and Stronghold was available as promised. Many of you even bought it that very day! Thanks for that.

And thanks for reading,
PS – I am still hoping for reviews of Stronghold on Amazon. If you have ten minutes and would be willing, any review would be wonderful. I am not looking for perfect marks here; just let the world know you read the book, and what you thought of it. Minimum length, 20 words. It’s that easy.