Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The end of a journey


Just over 12 months ago I decided to attempt the game of publishing a book, and today that decision was fully realized. "Dream State" is now available for purchase via my author site setup by the publisher.

I have found in my life that anytime an event or decision is finalized that I should reflect back on that particular journey, for in any transaction I take on there are always lessons. Each thing I do provides me the opportunity to define and re-define what it is I want, how I want to behave, and what I want to give to others.

The lessons learned through this last year are so numerous I sigh at the prospect of having to count them all. Publishing in the traditional sense is a tough business is the first lesson I learned. Having never tried it before, I went in with the standard bull in a china shop approach. Ok maybe it was more of the shotgun method of marriage. Regardless, I did it unaware of the politics involved and completely naïve as to the proper process.

Lesson two, read the flippin' instructions.

With as many resources available on the wonderful world wide inter-web nets, I should have educated myself better. But I took the Fire, Ready, Aim route. In the end it turned out like I wanted it to; I have more control over my destiny than I would have had if I had used a more traditional method. The trade for control was more work from me to market and advertise. Still, worth every ounce of energy I have put forth and will in the future.

Lesson three. Not everyone gives a shit I wrote a book.

My conversations became consumed with the story line, the process of writing, editing, polishing, etc. All those steps along the way fueled my want to be published, drove me to accept certain things, and helped me to draw the line of the acceptable when necessary. I found myself monopolizing conversations after that first innocent question was asked, "So what are you doing in your spare time?" That was a damning question for the uninitiated. I could and would spend hours talking of the premise, specifics about this character or that. Initially it was a lot of fun, but I fear my poor friends and acquaintances would be far less enthusiastic if they were to be asked.

Lesson four. Good things come to those that wait.

My view on that is "Patience my ass I wanna kill something, NOW!" Patience of a general nature has never been my forte by any stretch of the imagination. I like decisions to be made and action to take place. Needless to say, I am a much more capable person today, because I understand the importance of patience.

Lesson five. People are generally awesome.

This lesson could be in direct conflict with lesson three, however, the folks I refer to here are those that share the love of the process of writing. The wanna be authors, those that have made it, those that are trying, those that support us, and those that have failed. I have been fortunate enough to have found a wonderful crew of people I can say are more than casual acquaintances, many are friends. Claude Bouchard is an awesome PR man, fearless in his support. Luke Romyn has provided me more laughs than I should have had in public. CK Webb and DJ Weaver single handedly made me feel like a real author from nearly the first time we met on twitter. There are many others from the twitterverse that have quasi-adopted me and to all of you I appreciate the support and friendship. My twitter mentions however, would not be complete without a mention for my very good friend Winslow Eliot. She read "Dream State" against her better judgment you see as she is not a sicko like yours truly. She gave me awesome feed back, great criticisms, and made suggestions that will make the next book that much better. From her I learned to pull back, just a little. J

Appreciations extend beyond twitter or any of the other online applications. Chaz McEntire for his editing, what an awesome exercise that was. Owen Hall helped me learn a new way of stringing words together. And Selena Kong allowed me room to stretch out some thoughts that will appear in the next book.

Tam, Rob, Lisa, Elizabeth, and Don all coached, cheered, and bitched at me to get to the finish line. To them I will always be grateful.

Thanks every body.

Robert E

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