IT is a truth universally acknowledged, that a creative person in possession of a good story must be in want of a book.
And a publisher.
And readers to share it with.
It is also a truth, universally known, that writers are balls of writhing insecurity held together by caffeine, lemon cupcakes, and unquenchable dreams. (Booze and chocolate may also be involved. Your mileage may vary.)
Before publication, we worry about publication. In the publishing process, we worry that no one will read. Once the book is released, we worry over everything we worried about before and a half a dozen other things we haven’t even imagined before we’re in print.
In case you’re not getting the message: WRITERS WORRY.
In such situations it’s tempting, and easy, to focus on the scary things. The inequalities. The fears. But in that direction lies a slough of despair from which some authors never return.
I’m making another decision. I’m choosing joy.
In the days that come, I will see my book become a real thing – my words bound up in print for the very first time. I’ll have my first good review and my first bad one (because, as surely as daily sunrises, unpleasant reviews will happen to us all). I will sign my book for people who know me and, also, for people who don’t. I will laugh, and cry, and eat more cupcakes than I should.
(Which is, after all, what happens when you self-medicate with sugar. But I digress…)
And through it all, I will remember that I am fortunate to have this chance.
I will enjoy every moment, because in life there are no guarantees than any of this will ever happen again. I will share my joy with friends, and help other authors celebrate their milestones – because everyone deserves the joy of seeing a dream come true.
Just before Christmas, one of my friends surprised me with a gift that made me cry:
The cover art for CLAWS OF THE CAT, matted and framed to hang in my writing office. It brings me joy every time I see it, and not only because I love the art itself. This gift reminds me of three things I try to remember every day:
I am a published author – which means my oldest and greatest dream is coming true.
I have family and friends who love me – which means I am fortunate and blessed.
And, I have reasons for choosing joy over sorrow and positive thoughts over negative ones.
Does that mean I never succumb to fear? Of course not – I’m as human as everyone else (and more flawed than most). But I try my best to remember the choice is mine – and that I have chosen joy.
What do you choose to be joyful about today?