I had grand plans of posting regular updates about my journey from signing a book contract to becoming a published author. But it turns out I didn’t do that, mainly because publishing a book, raising a toddler and maintaining sanity are mutually exclusive activities.
My next brilliant plan was to publish my inaugural blog post when advance copies of the book arrived. But that joyous day happened a few weeks back and it felt irreverent to post about good news when so many were worried about Coronovirus.
procrastinated respectfully delayed until now, when it feels right to post a pick-me-up, so here it is: It turns out that receiving your own book in the post is an unrivalled feeling! I can still barely believe it’s true. For the first few days I couldn’t stop turning the book over in my hands and marvelling at its beauty.
So apologies dear readers that you didn’t get to join me along the way. In lieu of regular updates, I present to you an action montage instead. (Please note: This isn’t how my actual book reads, it has proper sentences):
May-Aug 2019. First round of edits. Submit finished first round back to editor. Feel teensy bit smug about ease of editing and being author.
Sept 2019: Receive next round of edits from my editor; have to move house unexpectedly, use up writing time packing and unpacking. Feel a bit stressed but excited and confident.
Wk 1 Oct: Son Theo gets pneumonia, writing in daytimes difficult as Theo can’t go to daycare. Writing in evenings when Theo’s asleep impossible, mainly as Theo barely ever asleep. Theo’s sleep compounded by illness. In desperation, antibiotic syrup is disguised in ice cream and strawberry Quik, resulting in full consumption and sleeping toddler. Feel smug about success of combining author and mum role, then spend remainder of evening scraping pink vomit off bed, carpet and child instead of writing.
Oct/Nov: Above scenario but with gastro/slapped cheek virus/ hours of bellowing for undiscernible reasons instead of sleep. Edits mainly done in wee hours of morning. Suspect being author could cause nervous breakdown, regret whole idea.
Dec 2019: Finish edits! Fist pump myself for being done with editing forever. Email off edited book.
Jan 2020: Editor sends next round of edits that I misinterpreted as someone else’s role.
Jan/Feb: Frantically work on edits in library while Theo in creche, daycare, with various beloved family members or babysitters. Exceed recommended daily intake of caffeine and sustenance chocolate, daily.
Feb: Marketing discussions. Front picture design discussions. Back jacket blurb discussions. Cover finalised.
Day of deadline for proof-reading changes: Theo looks sick again, can’t go to library creche. Work on final edits next to Theo, who lies down for five minutes and makes miracle recovery. Email off final copy with Theo sitting on my shoulders, playing bongos on my head.
Editor receives copy, later replies to say book is now off to printers, everything done. Cry a little bit, mainly as blood caffeine far exceeds RDI and celebratory chocolate not available.
March: Advance copy arrives. Feels so fantastic to see and hold my book, don’t regret even one minute of it. (Disclaimer: not entirely true). Start writing next book.
I have the best of intentions to deliver my next blog post soon, definitely before my next book. In the meantime, wishing good health and good spirits to all.