I've been unusually quiet on this blog for a while. Writing happened, and life, and beaches, etc. I've also been holding off on writing this post. It's this blog's 150th, and I wanted it to be something special and awesome and something that could act as a big huzzah. Then, like a lot of things when you think about them and want them to be just right, nothing did seem right, so I kept waiting.
Well, now, a Good Thing has happened (perhaps even a Great Thing) and it is easily 150th post material.
I have signed the contract for the book deal with Constable & Robinson, and it is Official.
Look - here's a cheesy, cliched, but damned-if-I'm-not-going-to-capture-this-moment picture of me doing it.
It's an odd feeling and an odd few seconds, doing this. Other writers can certainly appreciate it. My friend Kelsey included a shot of her signing her contracts in a video she made about the news. It's a nice tactile, binding moment that follows several years of build up.
That - the years versus the moment - is an important thing to remember when you're involve in art. This weekend I went to help out a good friend at an art show. His photographs went down pretty well (and congratulations to him) and the overall quality of the artists was fantastic (I wrote about the same art show last year here, and wondered if writers could ever do the same). I was struck by some comments made by another artist. He was selling wood turnings - bowls, plates, beautiful objects made with skill and care - and we got on to the topic of whether you should tell people how long it takes to create things.
'If you tell them it took you half an hour, there's no way they'll pay $400,' he said, '$400 for half an hour's work? Why would they want to! But they don't understand - it's half an hour plus the twenty years it took to get there.'
The work we put in without any rewards is where it really matters. So, singing these contracts, finally "officially" being an author, knowing it will happen, I have to remember - it's a few seconds, 150 blog posts, and thirteen or so years of waiting to get there.
I AM SO EXCITED. I could fall back on more good ol' happy words - it's a dream, it's a joy, I'm over the moon - but what I actually want to say is this: don't confuse years of work with final failure. Things take time. Books take a lot of time. I'm suspicious of people who say they want to be a writer and have never written a book, or want to be an artist but spend more time talking about it than alone, not telling anyone what they're doing, actually making art.
Did I mention the EXCITED part?
Right now, it's celebratin' time. The contracts are done and EREN is coming.