Created for Necessity, Employed for Passion
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet"
Let's build a world. Explore what we believe by writing. In many ways my characters’ experiences with fate, destiny and free-will mirror my own. What is up to us and what isn’t? It’s one of the great questions of the human experience, I think. But no matter what is for us to control, we must own the identity. You’re a writer if you write. Period. Writing is a lovely way to spend one’s time. Enjoy it. And I hope you enjoy my writing here.
Monday, April 23, 2012
Top 4 Myths About Selling A NovelDisclosure: this may get a little bit sappy.
I sold my first novel last week. I think that's honestly the first time I've written that sentence in lower-case letters since it happened, but I've been told the caps lock on my emails is getting to be a bit wearing. It's wonderful and incredible and more than a little difficult to believe. The truth is, though, that it hasn't been all kittens and fairy dust. There have been some curveballs along the way, too. Things I didn't expect. Which is why I thought it might not be a bad idea to share what selling a book is really like, in non movie-montage fashion. I'm myth de-bunking. My top four myths, to be precise. This isn't a particularly technical breakdown, but more an overall emotional assessment. For many writers, selling a book is the ultimate dream. What happens when it comes true? See below.
1) Rainbows will appear in the sky.
It's winter in New York so, yea, no rainbows. It was actually pouring rain the day we accepted the offer, which was fine, because the majority of what being on submission involves is staying in your bedroom in pajamas staring at your blackberry screensaver. It's not glamorous. Writing is probably the least glamorous profession there is. This doesn't change when you become an author.
2) You'll be absolutely over- the- moon happy.
This one isn't false, but happy isn't the one word I'd use to describe how I feel. People keep asking me if I am thrilled but the thing I feel more than anything, is relief. I get to do this now. I get to start here. It's real. I think that's the thing writers forget to talk about. It's exciting to have a dream come true, sure, but it's absolutely, incomparably relieving to actually get to live it. Those nights I stayed in and didn't get drinks? Worth it. The times I felt ridiculous saying I had to "do work?" Totally validated.
3) You'll get that magic phone call.
My agent joked with me last week that she never has to worry about being able to reach me. "You answer on the first ring!" she said. Literally, I could be on a plane to Indonesia and I'd figure out some way to answer her call.
But there were a lot of them. Phone calls and emails and even a few text messages. You need some stamina (and patience) to get through selling a book. It takes a while.
4) Everything changes.
A friend of mine who sold her first novel last year told me that selling a book changes a lot, but not everything. "You'll still have bad hair days," she said, "and the people who don't love you still won't."
It's curious what lurks behind personal success. I thought this was just about the book, it's not. The hard, cold truth is that old loves won't suddenly confess their undying devotion to you and friendships that have fallen apart won't be magically put back together. Because the reason things didn't work out had nothing to do with the fact that I wasn't a published author. Not even at all.
But the way you see yourself changes. I don't have to mumble something under my breath when someone asks me what I do anymore. I can just say, definitively, "I'm an author." And the best part? That's not a myth. That's just the truth.
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Having a book come out is the most awesome experience. I am already starting to hear from some of you and your voices, your words, your emails, are the most precious things I have ever come in contact with. Truly. The whole point of this book was to touch people, to have someone (anyone!) say hey, I'm going through that, too! So the fact that it's already happening is just remarkable. And I thank you so much for making that dream come true for me.
And, of course, there are the haters. I know I'm not supposed to talk about this, but today I just wanted to say a few words about negative reviews. It's a part of publishing. It's what happens when you put yourself out there. I would never deny someone the right to their opinion--- no one is required to love or even like my work. That's part of what makes it so cool--- it will speak to some, and not to others. But it upsets me when people say things about this book that just aren't true. It makes me want to fight back--- to point out what they are clearly missing. Hey! Wait a minute! Stop calling me bad names--- you're being mean! I sound like someone's little sister, huh?
This morning was one of those moments, for me, and I sat in front of my computer screen and thought of all the things I would say if I could. All of the lines I would point out, all the decisions I would clarify. All the questions I would ask if I had the chance.
But then I realized: I already did. I already said everything I need to. I wrote this book. I wrote it for truth. I wrote it for you. I wrote it for any girl who has, will, or is going through heart break. I wrote it to tell you that even when love hurts, it's not the end. I wrote it to say that we all have a choice in how our lives unfold-- how our love story unfolds. I wrote it to tell each and every one of you that you get to be the star of your own story.
This one is mine. The good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful--- it's all here.
Thank you for sharing it with me.
Monday, April 16, 2012
Monday, April 9, 2012
Leila Sales and we had an awesome time...Boston is so cool, you guys! The only thing I kept on about all weekend was going to Harvard, so we went. Don't I look smarter? Just breathing that academic, Ivy League air improved my IQ, I swear.
Hope you all had a great weekend...and enjoy the pics! I basically made Leila take a photo of me in front of every building.