I don’t know how to tell you this…
I have a publisher.
I HAVE A PUBLISHER!
There, well, that wasn’t so hard after all! I have just signed the contract. It’s right here on my desk in front of me. I have held it, prodded it, shaken it in the air and it is still real. A part of me expects it to pop like a bubble, or disappear in a puff of logic (RIP Douglas Adams) but it is still there, all crisp in black and white.
Really bone-shakingly, fingertip tinglingly real. I’m so excited I’m not even using real words anymore, but you’ll forgive me, won’t you?
This time next year, Twenty Years Later will be available for sale in bookshops. You’ll be able to hold it in your hands. It will sit on people’s bookshelves. My son will be able to read it. It will be left behind when I die.
Whoa! Where did that come from?
So many people have said to me that they like the thought of their children living on after them, like it leaves a part of them in the world after death. I have never felt that. My son is his own person, and the fact that he’s my son doesn’t equate to any feelings of legacy on my part, I’m just privileged to have him in my life. He will do his own things for his own reasons, his path will not be an echo of my being here.
But my book will. It gives me strange comfort to think that long after I have died, my son will be able to take a book off a shelf and read the words I left behind. I had no idea how important this was to me until now.
And now I’m crying – but I am so happy! Oh such relief and joy and excitement and the rush of a thousand cups of tea drunk on a thousand perfect days! One of those tiny glass boats found its way to a safe harbour, and a ship has been sent back to collect me.
I finally have the answer to the question at the top of this page. It is a heroic quest. This pursuit of publication was not madness. Twenty Years Later has a home at last. I have reached the port and there is a grand ship waiting to take me to the lands of the published.
You will come with me, won’t you?
After all, I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for all of you encouraging me, telling me to keep going, saying such kind things about my writing. You have been my coaches, my cheerleaders, my mentors and my friends, and I hope you will continue to be all those things in this new part of the journey. As I said before, this is only a beginning. Join me as we cross these uncharted waters. Oh what things we shall see together! What an adventure we shall have…