all about me

If I stick to my schedule—and I am dorky enough to have carefully written out a schedule—I will be finished with the second rewrite of my memoir come Saturday afternoon. On my schedule, there is a note that says “SUN: Day of Rest.” And then a space, and then below that, “MON: Line edit begins. “ And if history repeats itself, as frequently it does, I will finish the line edit fairly rapidly, ask various people for feedback on my manuscript, and then panic and sit all alone in the dark for two years without touching the thing again.

It’s getting a little embarrassing, how long this thing is taking me. I know I shouldn’t compare myself to other writers. I know that that is a short ride to a long hell inside my head. I know that beating myself up for being lazy, or scared, or scared and lazy all at once in a dizzying strawberry swirl is no use, at this point, and I should quit worrying about how it looks that I’ve taken so long and quit imagining that I’ve done something wrong, and just get back to the writing. That’s the important bit, right? Of course it is! The play’s the thing! Fucking etcetera.

I am so tired of writing this book that is about me and all my interesting opinions (note: they are not that interesting). I could write something else! But I’ve got to finish this book. Why? I just do. I have to write down all the stupid bullshit I have in my head about weight loss surgery and the math and the duringmath and aftermath. I will incorporate feedback and edits promptly and with great efficiency. And then my agents will take it off and do magical agent things and come back with some kind of news for me.

I am assuming it’ll be “bad” news (because everyone knows that publishing rulez), because it’s safer that way, and because then I don’t have to think about all the non-writer things that happen when you publish a book, like “having to talk to people” in the name of “self-marketing.”  But if someone wants to publish it, I will have a party, I will not lie to you. It really would totally rule.

However, if no nice publisher with many good qualities is interested? I will by-god self-publish the thing even if that means I Xerox it and then throw it up in the air on a windy day in a crosswalk, and then I will burn something in effigy—a pair of my fat pants? A pair of my skinny pants? A small eskimo child clutching a pine cone? Something symbolic, I dunno—and then I will move on with my life. I will stop being stuck in this run of 9 or so years of my past that I’ve been wallowing in for so long, and I will find new things to think about and new things to say and new things to care about.

I will write fiction again. Oh my god, I can’t even tell you how lovely that sounds. Imaginary things about imaginary people and imaginary events. Shit will blow up and animals will speak in tongues and the pillar of the universe will tremble and I can go back to being self-absorbed in smaller doses, like on facebook and in blog posts and twitter, and all will be well, all will be well, all manner of things will be well. Ish.

5 Replies to “all about me”

  1. I went to a book signing a few months ago as research to see what happens at those things and the author there had spent 10 YEARS writing her novel. TEN FREAKIN’ YEARS! So you are still ahead of her by leaps and bounds. No worries. And it will be beautiful! I know it!

  2. If the agent magic doesn’t happen, self-publish on Kindle. I promise to buy it so there is your first sale.

  3. I know how you feel. It took me six years just to finish the first draft of my last novel, only to realize when I got around to revisions that it was so broken I had no idea how to fix it, so I made myself put it away and move on. Otherwise I’d still be tearing my hair out over that bugger.

    Which is not to say that you should give up on your book, just that, yeah, sometimes they take forever. Just look at George Martin. He’s under contract with both publishers and HBO and has throngs of fans breathing down his neck for the next book and he has millions and millions of dollars and his entire job is just to write–and yet he STILL takes six to ten years to write a book. So it’s not really that abnormal.

    Makes me feel a little better, at any rate. Also, I cannot wait to read your book, even if it’s a hand-stapled xeroxed hand-written copy.

  4. thank you, jean. i’m trying! i’m trying. i’m getting there. and i promise to send you a SIGNED hand-stapled, badly xeroxed handwritten copy.

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