I’ve started writing a book

Well, I’ve started writing a book. I say this with a lot of fear and trepidation. Actually, that’s a bunch of crap. I say that with a lot of pride. Pride that I hope will eventually turn into humility, but most likely will just turn to shame.

You see, I’ve always wanted to be an author. And I suppose technically I am. I’ve written a number of articles and stories and a fair number of them have been published in real magazines that a few people have actually read. Not very many people, mind you, but people nonetheless. My big dream has always been to write a book. I think this dream has more to do with an egotistical desire to see my name in print on the new releases table at Barnes and Noble.

But that probably won’t happen. And I’m beginning to come to terms with that. I’ve been reading Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, and she reminds would-be writers that publication is nothing. Publication is vain glory, a passing breeze, meaningless. In fact, it’s probably more headache and ego-bruising than you’d experience if you never wrote anything at all. After all, who’s actually going to find my book in Barnes and Noble? And if they find it, who’s going to read it? And if they read it, who’s going to like it? Certainly my mother will read it, but that’s no guarantee she’ll like it.

So I’m beginning to accept that publication is crap. At least that’s what I keep telling myself. I have to tell myself that so I’ll stop thinking about what font I want my byline to appear in and focus on what the book is actually going to be about.

I’m writing a book on marriage. As if getting published isn’t enough ego inflation, I’m going to set myself up as an expert on marriage. Me the newlywed with divorced parents. Sounds like a long shot, huh? I suppose it is, but that’s half the fun.

The real question is why am I bothering to mention this here? I think I’m telling people because the more people that know I’m trying to write a book, the more people I won’t want to disappoint. It’s a simple psychological trick to keep myself going. So when you talk to me, fell free to ask how my book is coming. I’ll probably have developed a sleeping disorder from thinking up chapter titles by then and will be so enraged that you asked that I’ll have to hurt you; but that’s a small price to pay for a little accountability.

Let’s just hope my book isn’t as random as these thoughts, or I’m in trouble.

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