Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Price of Fame

When I embarked upon the writing of The Grim, it was a fantasy: a dream come true in more ways than one, that I was realizing in vivid and insurmountable color and anticipation.  And when I decided to publish it, I couldn't believe how all the pieces began to fall into place, as though the very dream I was chasing was running toward me too.

No one told me how much work it was going to be; how much energy I was going to have to put into it; how many volunteers I was going to need to pull off the book's launching; and least of all, no one told me how much it was going to cost me.  Now, almost five years to the day I began writing and with debt in the thousands, I wonder if I bit off more than I can chew.

Professionals and mentors encourage me, telling me all amateurs start here: scrounging for scraps and clawing for the momentary blissful spotlight that accompanies independent authorship.  "Eventually, it will be worth it," they say.  "You'll look back at this experience, counting the profits, and you'll never doubt yourself again."  Hmm, interesting concept...

Meanwhile, my son has outgrown his shoes and jeans; I need a summer wardrobe and a heart transplant; and my father and significant other (both of whom live with me) are still in search of jobs.  It begs the question if my sanity can remain in tact--because clearly there are a million other things I could be doing with a couple thou than spending it on a dream that may or may not render the happily ever after my advisors convince me is coming.  I almost feel I've been selfish: pursuing a passion despite the financial hardships I now face.

For now, I am eager for the "eventually" foretold to me.  Eager to experience this gratifying exhale that will remind me what all the compromising was for.  Until then, I pray the work I've done with the novel and its release rewards me with the happy ending I sacrificed for it, and that God keep me and the people who've stood by me as I created it, that we may exhale as one.

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