An amazing end to a great week
First, a bit of news. There’s a brand-new blog in the neighborhood. If you go here, you can read the “He said” version of what I wrote about yesterday.
Last night when I came home from the gym, there was a box on my doorstep. Small, rectangular. I picked it up and saw the CreateSpace return address. Oh my… it was the proof copy of my book. For the first time, I was going to see it in book form.
Did I rush inside and fall all over myself in my eagerness to tear it open? No.
I laid it on the table, stared at it, then walked away from it. I was afraid to open it. No lie.
How ridiculous was that? But I so wanted it to be perfect. And yet I knew there were a lot of things that could go wrong, and that it might not be. So I wanted to preserve the perfect image in my head for a while before I actually braced myself to look at it.
I know, that makes no sense. I felt like an idiot.
John called. We talked for a while, and then I sheepishly told him that I’d gotten my proof and I couldn’t bring myself to open it. He didn’t laugh at me.
“Do you want to wait until tomorrow night, and open it at my house?”
I told him I didn’t think I could wait that long.
“OK, how about this,” he said. “Want to open it now, on the phone with me? That way, if something’s wrong, you can tell me about it. And if there isn’t, then you can share that with me as well.”
I liked that idea. Carrying the phone, I went to the kitchen drawer, got my scissors and cut the tape on the package. Unfolding the carton carefully, I uncovered my book. I scanned the cover, looked at the picture, the spine, the positioning of the text on the back.
It looked fan-@#$%ing-tastic.
“Oh, John,” I breathed. “Oh, honey. It looks so good. It looks so, so good.”
We talked for a while after that, but I don’t remember any of the conversation. I was too busy staring at the cover, at Zelle’s beautiful work.
I now have to thoroughly check the interior, read through, look for dropped lines and all kinds of other weirdness. I can already see that the gutter (the margin space) is a little too big. But if I were to decrease that, it would change all the line breaks, all the page breaks, the page count… ugh. Forget it. I’ll live with a big margin.
So tonight, I’ll bring it to John’s. He’ll get to see the surprise I have for him.
Last year when I was in the middle of working on the book, he and I were talking about it one night and he asked me to whom I was going to dedicate it.
I thought it was a trick question. “You, of course!”
He shook his head. “No. You have to dedicate it to your dad.”
I hadn’t considered that, but as we discussed it, I agreed that it made sense. My writing talent and my sarcastic humor are straight from his genetic makeup. Whenever someone compliments my writing or says they think I’m funny, I think, “Thanks, Dad.” I was very proud of his accomplishments and despite our extremely rocky years, we worked it all out at the end. Of course I had to dedicate the book to him.
So I did. But what John doesn’t know yet is that underneath the dedication to my father, there is also one to John. Tonight, he’ll know. I can’t wait.
It’s been a very good week. The only thing that made some of my happy bubbles go flat was hearing that NG can’t make it this Monday. (sigh) I will miss him. But he’ll be back. I suppose this is life’s checks and balances — I had an abundance of riches this week, so next week will be a bit of a letdown. I know this about myself. So my goal for the following week is to keep busy, focus on getting my book wrapped up and putting it up for sale. On Monday night, I’ll think about the previous Monday and smile. Look forward to the next Monday and smile.
I can’t believe I’m one mouse click away from publishing my book. I just can’t believe it.
Have a great weekend, y’all.