Speaking of serious and personal things, the OMINOUS LIFE CLOCK on my brain reads that there are only 4 days until the 30th. 4 days until I become something that I can never back away from. 4 days until I accept that I’ll have to be at least PARTLY a shameless self-promoter if I want to be a fully fledged, honest to goodness author. The final week leading up to the book release is full of panicked, irrational self-assurances that I’ve forgotten something absolutely crucial and easily exposed to be poked at by the well-prepared spears of public criticism. I swear, one of these times I crack open a copy the book, I’m certain that there will be nothing but 394 blank, stark-white pages staring back at me, blaming me for their lack of substance. “Why didn’t you finish us,” they’ll accuse. “Why wasn’t there more?”
So that’s half my day, freaking out about the stuff that could ruin me before I’ve begun. The other half of the day my brain is circling the opposite pole, because no matter how many times I DO crack open that book to make sure of this or that, when I read through the end for the nth time I always get the chills I felt when I first wrote it. Those same nerve fibers still practically sing when I take in those last words.
Now, that’s me. Others may read it and discard it as readily and conveniently as anything can be discarded these days. But, I’m an appreciator of this story as much as I am the one who wrote it out. I almost bemoan the fact that I’m the author, because I get excited about it when I talk to others, and I don’t want that to come across to anybody as a guy beating his own chest. I’m legitimately intrigued by the story, and I find new things in it every day to appreciate—increased depth in the characters, as well as a haunting appreciation of the ruined world they inhabit. I feel sorry for them, just as much as I celebrate the adversity they face. I wish I could have given them more after the pages ran dry but, sadly, my time with them is largely done. They’ll have to be okay on their own.
RELEASE DAY LOOMS. I am at the mercy of it, and it me, and so for now we’ll remain tidally locked until the dice go the way they will. Have at you, June 30th!
Back to work.