Susan's Blog

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Paperback Writer

Dear Sir or Madam
Will you read my book?
It took me years to write
Will you take a look?
— Come on, you know

Today is the official day that my book comes out in paperback. You should be able to see it in a bookstore and buy it. I will certainly be going into bookstores around me and asking for it. Barnes and Noble is pretty good about stocking it and the one in “downtown” Brookline is great about leaving it facing out where I left it last. This picture is my first reading ever, at Brookline Booksmith, my favorite bookstore of all. It’s a real bookstore, with staff who know books, and chairs, a fun kid area, and interesting people browsing the aisles.

Been working on the Next One, squeezing out a couple of pages a day. It is not Writer’s Block, nor is it Writer’s Constipation; it is more Writer’s Irregularity. I wish there were a writing equivalent to Metamucil (or Maltitol candies) that would get things just flowing, but without the cramps, of course. (Too much information, even for me!)

I can’t say what my new book is about until I sell the proposal. My goal is to finish one sample chapter. I need a block of two hours to feel like I can really write. I need it to be uninterrupted when I get going, or else I get really bitchy. When Ned comes over to show me something funny on the Internet or the kids start asking me for stuff when I’m in the middle of a streak — ooh, it’s kind of ugly. Yesterday I tried writing in Peet’s and then Starbuck’s and it was good because I could kind of lose myself in it while sipping sweet hot drinks. And because these were neighborhoods where I don’t know too many people.

Maybe you’re thinking, “What happened to the novel? Or the Special Olympics book?” The novel is complete, but no one is reading it whom I asked to read it. People are too busy, or keep getting stuck somewhere. The heroine sounds too much like me and people get uncomfortable hearing my thoughts. (Imagine that!) The husband seems creepy to some, who are probably expecting it to be Ned, who it is not, even if I insist this is fiction! Only one friend read it and critiqued it a bunch, which was wonderful. A few friends critiqued it here and there, but overall were not wowed. This hurts but it tells me something. The novel needs to stew for a while to become its better self, I think. I want my readers wowed. That makes five novels I’ve written that suck! Ouch.

Special Olympics book, not yet. I am waiting to see what my friend over there at SO does with his own book and neither he nor I have the energy to make it happen together right now. After Thanksgiving he told me he needed to redouble his efforts there and wants to give that a chance. I was down about it for about a day, and then I got this new idea. So it’s okay, because my current project is a good one, even if it is coming out in drips and drabs. MPWA wasn’t built in a day, or even a year. But now, it is also available in paperback! Hooray!


You have IBS. Irritable Book Syndrome.

Because I care.

Rude Guy

— added by Anonymous on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 at 11:39 am

I am finding that the hardest part about writing is making time to actually write.
After that, it’s doing the writing.
I’m sure you’ll find yourself a firm little toe-hold and just take off.

— added by Anonymous on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 at 12:13 pm

Rude Guy – good one!
as long as it’s not “irritating book syndrome”

Jen – I wrote a lousy depressing poem about Nat today. Maybe later.

— added by Susan Senator on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 at 6:03 pm

Kewl, it’s gone from “pre-order” to “add to cart” on my amazon wishlist.

Of course, the way they do the wishlists, I have no idea if someone has already bought it for me or not.

— added by Julia on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 at 8:51 pm

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