Holding a book you’ve written is an amazing feeling. I’d started with an idea, spent months fleshing out that idea into a story and more months shaping the story into one that people might want to read. And then there was the nail-biting process of finding a publisher. As the manuscript moved through the editorial and production processes, other people got involved, and I realized more and more that the story was no longer an idea that lived only in my head. That idea was starting to take shape in the physical world. And now—more than three years after I began writing—here it is.
It didn’t really hit me, though, until I climbed into bed with a new novel to read—my novel. I’d read my book a zillion times before. Scene by scene, draft after draft, on my computer as I was writing and editing. Checking the copyedits. In galleys, watching for typos and other last-minute issues. But here it was, in the exact same form as the thousands of other books I own. I could lie in bed, flip its pages, smell the fresh ink, crack the spine. (OK, I haven’t been able to bring myself to actually crack the spine.) I could stick a bookmark between the pages and drop the book on top of the pile stacked up beside my bed or put it away on a shelf.
Suddenly, my book is real.