Thursday, October 27, 2011

Confronting Your Demons with Author Kerri Nelson

Welcome to Day #16 of
the Dark Days of Demons Blog Event
here at the Book Boost!

Win a DVD set of Season 1 of Reaper and meet Book Boost's owner and paranormal author, Kerri Nelson today!

Your Own Personal Demons

You've heard the term "confronting your demons"? Or the idiom..."face your demons"? And, of course, in simplest terms it means to confront or face something you've been trying hard to avoid.

As a writer, I have a lot of personal demons. Things like fear of my work not being good enough, fear that I'll never reach my publishing goals, fear that I'll hit a writing wall and won't be able to finish another book.

As a mother, I have a whole new slew of demons knocking at my door. Fear of not being a good mother, fear of setting a bad example, or fear of not being able to provide for my family.

I'm sure that everyone reading this post has their own list of demons. And there are days when I'll do anything to avoid facing them. Perhaps I'll just take up a new venture like...sewing or hmm...maybe I should ask my mother about what to do with my nap-resistant kids? Giving up seems easier but what should we really do about these demons?

Are they all meant to be confronted, conquered, and ceased? Or, is it okay to keep some demons in the closet?

I guess it really depends on the particular demon and the particular goal you have in mind. For me, I like to confront them. It takes willpower and effort but I always feel better for making the attempt. Do I always win? No. But do I always come back for more? Yes!

Here's an example...

When I was first writing Courting Demons, I entered it into a contest. One of those standard RWA Chapter contests were you'll have both published and unpublished judges reading your work. My entry came back in 4th place. Not high enough to 'final' and make it to the next round where it would be reviewed by top industry editors/agents. Close but not close enough.

I was told by the contest coordinator that my entry had been only 2 points away from being a finalist. This really burned me. So close. So very close. Of course, it could have simply been a case of subjective review. It didn't necessarily mean that the 3rd place entry was all that better than mine. After all, that entry could have had 3 completely different first round judges than the finalists did and they could have rated something an 8 on a scale where my judges may have given it a 6 on the same scale.

That's a problem with some of these contests. Each entry is not judged by the same people across the board. One may be a very tough judge. Not giving out 8 or 9 except in rare cases. While, I've witnessed some judges who won't give anything less than an 8 to any entry--no matter how bad.

So, these results kind of gnawed at me at the time. What if it really wasn't good enough? What if I'd wasted all that time writing something that would never make it. I thought about tossing the manuscript and moving on. For a short while, it became my personal demon. I lost a little confidence in it and in myself. I just wasn't sure about sending it out again.

But then I decided to face my self-confidence demon. I pushed forward. I had faith in my story and I knew that others would too. I had to believe that. I had to try again.

Turns out, I wasn't wrong. Soon, I had entered it into another contest that allowed feedback from readers versus just other authors and I gained a great following of supporters. This book then went on quite a journey. It survived the year long contest, made it to the top three finalists as judged by NY publishing editors and even received both an offer of agent representation and a NY contract.

Of course, all that would turn out to just be the beginning of my battle with seeing this book through to publication but I never gave up. Some of my supporters who encouraged me to stay in the fight have seen me through almost 3 years of getting this book onto the virtual shelves.

But I often wonder, what if I'd let that contest demon keep me from continuing on with this book? What if the demon had won?

I'm glad it didn't and that I can share Courting Demons and all its chaotic craziness with you today.

Share one of your personal demons with us and tell us how do you deal with them?

And, by the way, if you ever need help slaying those demons...I've got your back!


Paisley Barton was already having a bad day before she turned her husband into a rat.

First, she was fired by her boss and then came home to find hubby in the shower with a naked blonde chick. They say that hell hath no fury like a woman scorned but this break-up may just unleash hell on Earth when Paisley casts a spell of vengeance against her philandering husband.

After her spell casting inadvertently opens a portal between dimensions, Paisley finds her family home transformed into a nightly courtroom for settling disputes between demons of the underworld and she’s the judge! If that’s not enough, she’s got to deal with a charming, ancient demon named Camden who wants to be her personal bodyguard while trying to explain her husband’s sudden, mysterious disappearance to sexy police Detective Dalton Briggs.

But Paisley will show them all that an everyday working mom is better equipped than most to deal with the mystical mayhem…and with a tempting demon hottie and a flirtatious young detective vying for her affection, she soon learns that being single again isn’t so bad after all.


Before she could catch a full breath, the weight of the wolf was quickly hoisted off her and she watched as he flew backwards and crashed into a nearby wall. Paul’s bag of old golf clubs fell over and they splayed outward onto the wooden floor of the attic.

Dante the wolf lay in a startled heap on the floor and Camden stood over him. Paisley looked at Camden and when he turned his face towards her, she saw he had a new tint to his complexion. He almost looked as if he were glowing like one of those light sticks the kids carried around on Halloween. His eyes were startlingly fierce and the pupils were dilated to gigantic, black holes. His teeth were elongated and the sharp points protruded out of his mouth and over his lower lip as he panted.

She found herself simultaneously frightened and aroused by the sight of him in battle mode. Perhaps it was the warrior-like way in which he stood over the dazed and confused wolf that had attacked her. He had protected her…come to her defense as if playing the hero in a story.

Or perhaps it was that seductive force field that seemed to follow him wherever he went. Then again, it could be the fact that from where she lay on the floor, she could see clearly the outline of his huge erection pressing against the inseam of his pants leg. For a moment, maybe longer than a moment, she simply couldn’t tear her eyes away from it.

She figured in the world of demon life that a fight with another demon might possibly be seen as a huge turn on. The violence, the rush of power, and the blood.

Paisley finally tore her eyes away from the pulsating male hardness and gazed up to see Camden watching her with a lustful look she wouldn’t have been able to resist if they were in a slightly different situation. Like say…the way he was lying on top of her just hours ago in her own bed.

Then the sight of his devilish grin drew her back to reality as he flicked his tongue out of his mouth and touched it ever so slightly to the tip of one of his fangs.

He may have been only a lowly vampire in the past but he sure looked like an amazingly powerful one now. She wasn’t sure what the rest of his demon powers entailed but she was already finding it difficult to resist the strength and virility that this demon was demonstrating for her right now.

Sure, he might be evil and extremely annoying but she wasn’t living in the real world anymore. She’d somehow managed to integrate herself into the world of darkness and she might as well figure out how to enjoy it in some way.

As her mind exploded with all the thoughts and emotions caused by the werewolf attack of just moments earlier, she nearly screamed when she saw the panther Felinsky leap through the air straight towards Camden’s head as if to pounce on him like the oversized cat that he was. She thought to voice a warning but Camden’s reflexes were amazingly fast.

He ducked down just as the cat soared through the air. As he hovered just above Camden’s head, Camden jumped up and shoved the cat towards the open portal. Then, he glanced back at Paisley one more time over his shoulder.

Before he leapt into the portal after the cat, he gave her a flirtatious wink.

Want More Kerri?

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What award did I win in high school for my journalism efforts?

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Tami Winbush said...

I have the same, 'my work isn't good enough' demon. I have only submitted one piece and the rejection letter was way off on the facts, and was REALLY harsh. It makes me not want to submit anything else. I have to face that demon and b*tch slap it into submission.

Liz said...

GREAT post! I am really struggling to decide about contests. It could be yet another full time job added to writing/editing/promoting/social networking/blogging. My personal demons are more about my kids at this point. They are all teenagers and I get terrified at times that I've done them a disservice as a parent. YOu know, just because I suck as a parent most days (because I have teenagers in the house--it's a seriously circular argument).

Rebecca said...

Great post Kerri!

“Not good enough” is probably one of my biggest demon. Whether it’s writing or any endeavor at home, work, or activity, I always second-guess whether my accomplishment is satisfactory. Usually the way I deal with it is to build up small successes until the inner critic can be muffled. Of course, it can all be dashed with a failure. Not letting the failures keep me down is another struggle. But we all share that!


JeanMP said...

Great post! Confronting my demons has helped me grow and become more confident in myself.

skpetal AT hotmail DOT com

kerribookwriter said...

@Tami~Everyone struggles with those rejections. That person probably didn't even read your work and grasp the brilliance. Get back up on that horse, girl. I know you can do it!

Thanks for stopping by!


kerribookwriter said...

@Liz~I know. The contests can really be a curse or a blessing. Hard to say except on a case by case basis. I'm sure you're a wonderful parent. I survived a teenage stepson and he seems appreciative of my efforts now. Although at the time he was a doozy!

Thanks for the comment!


kerribookwriter said...

@Rebecca~I know you have it in you to accomplish great things. I'll be a cheerleader for you anytime! Hang in there and keep up your amazing attitude--you'll make it!


kerribookwriter said...

@Jean~Yep, sometimes it is easier said than done. But if we can conquer those jerky demons we can make every day count.


Na said...

The case of "close but not close enough" always burns. It's being just close enough to touch but not have it that makes us visit what-ifs scenarios. Then again many things happen for a reason so with these sort of demons I don't dwell on the what-ifs but use them as a motivator. I try and try again. I'm glad you are able to share "Courting Demons" with the world. You certainly showed that demon :)


Sarah Hoss said...

One of my demons is worrying too much. I worry about everyone and everything. Some maybe justified while others may be silly. I often find myself realizing that sooner or later, I have to step back and hope that the decisions made are the right ones and if not, that good lessons can come from the results.

Debby said...

Great post! Demons can be so versatile
debby236 at gmail dot com

kerribookwriter said...

@Na~Thanks for the comment. Yep, I like to show those demons who's boss. Then I run and hide. ;-)

Hugs, K.

kerribookwriter said...

@Sarah~That's a great way to look at it. You always have such a great attitude and thanks for being my friend and for your continued patience with all my delays. xo

kerribookwriter said...

@Debby~Yes they can, Deb. Thanks for stopping by!


kerribookwriter said...


I love this daily prize and I hope you will too---For Season 1 DVD set of Reaper---the winner is...


Congrats! I'll be in touch. And thanks to everyone who came by the Book Boost to support me. More fun coming in November, hope you'll come back soon!