to want to conceive it, these things don’t happen by accident. There are no ‘accident’ books that I am aware of. Once you know you want it you have to work towards your goal. You dream about what it will be like and how you could change the world with it.
Friends, relatives and strangers poke, prod and ask what you will
name it. They also want to know intimate details like if they are in it or what it’s about. Regardless of what you tell them or what the disclaimer at the beginning says, they find a character or scene that ‘must be’ about them.
Once you write your first few chapters ‘your baby’ is growing. It
grows on the pages you type while it continues to grow in your head. It kicks in the night and wakes you up leaving tiny details behind that you will sloppily write on a notepad and add in the morning. Sometimes it makes you sick, especially when you are stuck on a scene. But crackers don’t help this kind of sickness.
Once the book is completed you send it off to the publisher, this is the ‘ultra sound’ in the book world. At this stage you are terrified that it
may not live. The publisher tells you if it’s a living, breathing mass that is worth bringing into the world. If it’s not, it’s disappointing and heart
wrenching but you trudge on rewriting and editing until its good enough for a second ultra sound. When the publisher says it’s good to go, that’s when the birth announcements go out, complete with the due date. You circle that date on the calendar and wait. You tell EVERYONE the due
date including your mother who you call first.
Next it’s onto editing and the cover. You calmly do the edits even though you mutter under your breath. The cover is the very first picture of your baby. You gasp when you first see it and its love at first sight. You stare at it in awe and wonderment. It’s not just a book cover; it’s YOUR book cover. It’s unique and beautiful and perfect just the way you imagined. You show it to everyone whether they want to see it or not.
But just like with real pregnancy due dates the book is not
always born on the date you were given. Sometimes they are an early surprise coming in the middle of the night or in broad day light without so much as a push. Other times, like with my recent release, they are late, causing anxiety and worry. People are emailing, sending personal messages and calling – where is the book and why hasn’t it been released?! Is everything okay??
Sometimes there are complications on the publishing side. My book
had problems at the printer with the ISBN! OMG it sounds serious doesn’t it? In the book world it is. The ISBN is a unique number assigned to all books that are published. It’s the identity of the book, an identity that no other book in the whole wide world can have. It’s like a fingerprint. Without one, a book is nothing. Mine required an emergency C-section but my master editor handled the procedure flawlessly. In the end everything was fixed and around noon my book was delivered to Amazon. I was flooded with well wishes from family and friends.
I was elated. It was now finally out of me and present for the entire world to see.
Next I will bore people with pictures and facebook posts about my
book much like some people do with their real babies. I will enter my book in contents. Not ‘my baby is cuter than your baby’ contests but more like‘my book is better than your book’ contests.
The book signing will be like the ‘shower’ except with books it
happens after the birth. I will sit at a table looking all proud while people
poke and prod at copies of my ‘baby’ and we will eat candy together. And some people will want to take ‘baby’ home. And for a fee I will let them and I will happily sign my baby and send it off into the world thinking, “make me proud!”
When all the excitement wears off I will then work on and finish
the next book. At this time I am carrying twins! I am working on a novella (the last and final book in the Lydia Porter series) and a big fictional novel which travels down a different path. And the chaos and craziness will start all over again but my new goal is to ‘pop’ them out faster. And that my friend’s is how writing a book is like having a baby.
And isn’t my new ‘baby’ absolutely the greatest most brilliant thing you have ever seen? If you think so (or not) please tell the world about
it by leaving a review on Amazon. In a writers world book reviews are the best gifts and they cost no money. The more reviews the more sales, the more sales the more productive the babies become. And what good is it to bring ‘baby’ into the world if it isn’t going to be productive?!
God Save Us All