I've been planning to write this post for a while, but every time I think about it I worry the words won't come out right. There's a lot of things I want to express but - despite being, y'know, a writer - it's difficult to capture certain things adequately. Maybe it's because I'm a writer, and I want to get it just right, and I know when the words are wrong, that I'm stumbling a bit.
The reality of Eren being a book has finally, actually hit me, and it all seems a bit insane. It's a book that's been with me - and only me, really - for so, so long. This thing, this idea of having a book published, has been my dream for all of my adult life so far (I am only 28, I know, but still...) and, honestly, so much of my childhood. I came to books late, but I latched upon the idea of sharing my books with the world pretty fast. I've spent years writing, dreaming, cursing and getting better. It's easy to look back; it was hard to look forward and see any future where Eren would be read. Now we're counting down to that future in days, not years, and ... I mean, what do you do with that?
This week, copies of Eren went out to book bloggers and reviewers, many of whom will be wonderful enough to write about it as part of a blog tour. I went shopping with my wife / sister-in-law (two people, not one. Come on, now) to buy things for the launch party. I signed the first actual copies of the book. I have an agent and and an editor (two, actually, thanks to a US deal) and a publicist and many other things that I always wanted but never really believed would happen. I'm so thankful for these people, who guide and support and challenge me.
And earlier this week, thinking about Eren and bookshops and readers, I was struck by a single thought:
What if they hate it? What if this doesn't work?
What if it's not very good?
I know it's normal to think all those things. I'm a pretty up-beat guy but still, as an author, it's usual to face doubts and fears about your work at some point. I know, also, that some people will hate the book. Some people will like it. That's how art works: it's a reflection of a world, but not the world, and that means people react differently. Putting something out in the world has to count for something, but Eren is an intensely personal thing - a part of me, I guess - and sharing that with strangers is ... odd.
I'm very, very happy that Eren will be read. I'm also somewhat unsure what that means. Is it my story, still? Am I over thinking things? (Probably). I've never done this before, and I never will again - not with a book like Eren.
So, these are my muddled, excited, nervous thoughts. I'm apprehensive and giddy. Maybe things like this are why writers get a bad name. Either way, the die is cast, and next month - 28 days' time! - Eren, my book, will be published, and from that point on I guess it won't be quite my book anymore.
It's going to be an interesting month.