What a lovely week it’s been! My first novel launched, the reviews are pouring in, and I’ve had nothing but kindness and support from my nearest and dearest.
Who could ask for more?
See. Look at these gorgeous flower arrangements. The one on the left is from the sweetest parents-in-law a gal could hope for, and the one on the right is from a wonderful friend.
There’s so much I could post about here, about the whole process, about what it feels like to finally hold that novel—the physical book—in my hot little hands. And some of this, I will certainly share (as soon as I come back down to Earth). I dreamed of publishing a novel for years, and the reality of it has been both nothing like what I imagined and also more than I’d thought possible.
Life, of course, has been busy–as it is for all of us. It doesn’t come to a screeching halt just for little ol’ me and my book, and that’s okay. On my plate the past week: grading college essays, reading and writing for graduate school, promoting Keowee Valley with emails, calls and letters; solo-parenting when my husband’s been away on business, and trying with all my might to convince my rascal of a 3 year-old—who’s been getting into big time trouble at preschool—that Mama is most definitely The. Boss.
Yes, it takes convincing. She’s not convinced. But she’s still cute.
But back to the week of the book.
Two things I’ve learned:
1. Reading back over the Acknowledgements section of the novel (because of course I’ve poured over the whole thing, examining each and every page, time and time again), I came to an incredible realization.
Not one person, over the course of my life thus far, ever told me I couldn’t do it. That I couldn’t be a writer. In fact, every single person—family member, friend, family-friends, relatives, and teachers—encouraged me, spurred me on, and believed in me.
Imagine if I’d wanted to be a go-go dancer.
That kind of belief? It is a magical thing, my friends.
2. Watching your loved ones read the Dedication and Acknowledgements sections of a novel, watching them read words you crafted so carefully in an attempt to thank them for all of that belief and encouragement … watching them tear up with emotion?
So, though the initial excitement is wearing off a bit, and it’s back to the work-teaching-grad school-writing-family grindstone (beautiful, exhausting, wouldn’t-trade-it-for-the-world life that it is), I’m still planning to savor the moment. And we’ve got some fun things in the works: launch parties in my hometown and in the town where I live now, and more. Great book events at fantastic indie bookstores, participation in book festivals, etc.
It’s going to be a busy, busy Fall. I hope you’ll follow along!