Oh, What A Year!

Posted Jul 12 2012, 10:58 am in , , , , , , , , , ,

Today marks the one year anniversary of a day that changed my life. It was one year ago that I sat at the same table I’m sitting at now, looked out at the lake, took a deep breath and hit a button my laptop.


There is no cooler feeling that opening a box of your own books!

I took a huge leap of faith and launched my first novel, Nothing Stays In Vegas, into the world.

A few months later I published Unexpected Gifts, then Drawing Free and then Sugar Crash. It has certainly been a wild ride of highs and lows.

I debated over what to write today. About how to celebrate this anniversary. Yes, it’s been an amazing year. The support from friends, family members, even total strangers, has been incredible. Receiving emails from readers who could identify with Becca’s struggles, who wanted to go to Vegas to find ‘their’ Leo, who could relate to Darci and Taylor’s journey or who just enjoyed a romantic story, has been one of the most amazing parts of the last year. Learning that my words have touched someone in some way is simply incredible.

But it hasn’t always been good. There have definitely been lows too. Bad reviews happen. They suck, but they happen. It hurts badly to hear that someone didn’t like your writing, your characters and your story. But it’s a reality. Just as in life, you can’t make everyone happy. The other reality is that not all friends and family will support you. This has been a tough one for me. But all the amazing new friends I’ve made have helped to soften this blow.

Even with all the lows thrown in, the fact remains – It’s been an AWESOME year!

Looking back now, I never would have thought that I’d be sitting here today only twelve months later, getting ready to finish and prepare my fifth book for publication. I never would have imagined that I would finally be living my dream and would be getting paid to write books! It sounds trite, but it is a dream come true and one I’m incredibly thankful for every day.

I want to offer a heart felt thank you to every single one of you who has supported me in some way on this adventure because the fact remains that I never could have done it without each of you in my corner. Thank you!

To celebrate and say thank you, I’m giving away books! To be entered, simply leave a comment and please share with your friends! The more the merrier, I’ll just give away more books! I’ll do the draw next Thursday, so be sure to check back to see if you won. And don’t forget… I can’t send you free books if you don’t send me contact info!



34 responses to “Oh, What A Year!”

  1. Amber West says:

    Congratulations!! πŸ™‚

  2. Liz McLennan says:

    Happy Anniversary, Elena! What a pleasure it has been to tag along, watching you shine and grow! M’wah! Much, much love,


  3. nancymhayes says:

    Yahoo! Fantastic work Elena.

  4. Julia Indigo says:

    It was that recently, and you’ve already published FOUR books?

    Girlfriend, you are my hero(ine)!!

  5. Nancy says:

    Elena, it has been amazing to watch you accomplish so much in the past year! Congratulations! Happy 1 year anniversary! Wishing you many more years filled with more accomplishments!

  6. Kent Travis says:

    Way to go, Elena! You work hard, play hard and keep your priorities straight (as fate as I can tell). The Lord bless and keep you in this next year of writing.

  7. Shannon says:

    Elena, I remember you bringing the twins to Kindermusik class, and talking about what you wanted to do, and I remember you talking about wanting to write. At that time I believe you were looking at some journalism type “stuff”. You are one of the moms from my classes that really stuck with me, and I have enjoyed watching your successes….with being published in Chicken Soup, and now your own novels….of which I have read them all. Congratulations!

  8. What a fab year it’s been for you. I tell so many people about your success story… (And my mom loves her copy of Sugar Crash!). Can’t wait to see what other fab things this year has in store for you.

  9. Marcia says:

    Congratulations! I love free books, of course, but I’ve read ALL of your fab offerings. I will tell all my friends to come visit and enter.
    Wishing you a doubly fabulous year ahead!

  10. robyn f says:

    i would love to get a book πŸ™‚

  11. Bionic Grandma says:

    What a great year you have had, Congratulations on the Anniversary of your first year of self-publishing. I am so proud of you. I keep telling people about your books and just the other day I had someone call me and comment on how she loved your book. Good luck on an even bigger success for the coming year!

  12. 67andgood says:

    Congratulations….I am so impressed. I had a book published through CreateSpace last year about my female family members and enjoyed seeing my book in print. I have a second book in my head and just need to sit down and start letting those characters talk to me. I would love to read any of your books.

    Terri T.

  13. Jenny Hansen says:

    Elena, I am so happy for you! I adored Sugar Crash and look forward to reading more of your books. What an exciting year it’s been for you (and all the WANAs)…may the next year be even better. πŸ™‚

    I love that you took time to commemorate the milestone!

  14. winnwords says:

    Congratulations, Elena! You set a great example for each of us out here who wonders if it’s really possible to make a living writing. I admire your creativity and your tenacity! Onwards and upwards!

  15. Sandy says:

    Congratulations my friend! I am proud to call you a friend and tell everyone that “my friend Elena is a writer and you need to read her books!” Keep on writing and I promise to keep on reading.

  16. I hope you’re having champagne today, Elena. Celebrate – it’s an awesome accomplishment.

  17. Linda McFarland says:

    Congratulations Elena……I too love free books…please include me…..I have shared on facebook and twitter……..

  18. Karen McFarland says:

    Congratulations Elena! Wow, five books. You’ve been really busy! I am so happy for you! πŸ™‚

  19. Julie-Anne Adams says:

    The reward is in your words. Nothing great comes without challenges. The difference is Elena, that you took them head on and you’ve done it, and your still powering on. That is inspirational to me and it seems many others. The Sincerest of Congratulations to you! Look forward to seeing you continue x

  20. Cassia says:

    That’s is so awesome! Congrats, Elena! You’ve worked hard for that dream to be true! Happy Anniversary!

  21. Congrats and happy anniversary!!

  22. Jan Markley says:

    Congrats! Glad it’s been a great year and that it’s worked out for you. It’s the result of hard work and quality books!

  23. I echo what the others have said, Elena. What a year, indeed! Wishing you many more inspiring words and success.

  24. Elena Aitken says:

    Thank you all SO much for your support and well wishes!! I’m feeling very overwhelmed (in a totally awesome way!)
    Don’t forget to check back next Thursday (or better yet go click that little button up on the right and subscribe) to see if you won a book!

  25. Carrie Sutton says:

    You go, girl! What’s great is that you did what was needed to make your dreams come true. I’m very proud to know you and call you friend. You are a shining star!

  26. Wow! Four books in one year? That’s awesome! What a great year you’ve had and I’ve loved getting to know you Wana sister. Here’s to another fab year!

  27. Happy Anniversary! It’s been a privilege and great fun to have been part of your amazing year. You are an inspiration to all of us and I know the wonderful success of this year is simply going to continue to grow. Write on, my friend!

  28. […] Aitken is celebrating her first year as a published author by giving away books. Stop by her blog to check it […]

  29. Karen Rought says:


  30. Congrats, Elena! This is a huge milestone. I’m following in your footsteps, and your story is an inspiration to many of us! Happy anniversary.

  31. Congratulations, Elena. I’m about ten months and three books behind you. It’s always encouraging to hear about the success of others.

  32. […] you read my post last week you might remember that I mentioned something about a book giveaway. And you might be […]

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