I saw my actual book today.
Not a Word doc. Not a printer’s proof. Not loose pages with edits. Not a PDF.
The real book.
The truck from the midwest was scheduled to arrive on Thursday. On that day, I felt like Navin R. Johnson when the phone books came out. “I’m somebody now! I’m in print! Things are going to start happening to me now!” But, the truck was delayed and I had a few more days to wait to become somebody.
Things did not start happening to me until today when I was handed a copy of the book.
Had I not been standing in the distributor’s warehouse with two people I had known for a total of three minutes, there might have been some outward rejoicing. Instead, I just clutched the book and made an awkward comment about how I was going to go home and hold my book. Lovely.
I took some books home with me and left the rest behind in the warehouse. Soon, many, hopefully all, will be repackaged and shipped out to consumers, bookstores, and online retailers. In a few weeks, I will schlep boxes of books to craft fairs and programs and book signings to sell myself.
It seems now the goal has changed from getting the books to getting rid of the books.
But for now, I’m going to look in the kitchen at the pile of books on the counter and rejoice.