Is it okay to tell you guys that I am scared? Writing has a lot of scary moments, but I think I'm hitting the worst of them. I have finished my edits. The proofreader is going through the manuscript, finding each and every mistake that multiple passes by one anal grammar nazi writer and one anal grammar nazi editor failed to catch. And while I am waiting for my one last chance to catch any remaining mistakes, I have to stick my neck out further than I ever have before. And it's scary.
My publicist has been lining up people who would like to review the book. Oh my goodness. I am deeply grateful to each and every one of them but other people are soon going to be talking about my book. Without me. It's like putting your firstborn on that first schoolbus. I was not a sentimental mamma, I didn't cry, but it still tugged at me. And my firstborn book will soon be getting sized up by a bunch of unsentimental people who don't care how much mommy loves him.
Worse than that, we have been approaching other authors to ask for endorsements. Again, my publicist does a lot of that, but in a few cases, it's up to me. If I already have a personal connection with an author, it's better if I approach that person myself. And in the case of some particularly audacious requests, I am doing it because, well, because. I don't want anybody else to feel bad because we got a "no" from Big Bad Famous Author. Feeling bad is my job. And asking other writers to decide if my baby is worth a pat on the back or not, well, that is scary. The mere fact I have written a book isn't going to impress them; they've already done it. And they're busy. That's what I keep telling myself. If they say no, it's just because they're busy. Not because they read the first two chapters and rolled their eyes.
All of this is scary. I got through some of the scary parts of the writing by telling myself I was good enough. I shouted down all the self-doubt by telling myself I was a genius. And that was enough. If you have to tell yourself fairy stories to motivate yourself, that's okay. As long as it works. But fairy stories don't work in the real world. Other people have to actually like Disenchanted. Readers have to like it, readers who don't know me, who don't care how long it took or how hard it was or what my sales are. Readers who want books to answer to their expectations.
Putting myself and my work out there is scary. But I am putting all of this in God's hands and trusting him that he knows what he's doing. And peace returns. And I roll up my shirtsleeves and go on to the next task.