THIS IS THE BEST PART.
A package on the doorstep. Not a fat one. A skinny. At first touch it is obvious what it is:
A single book.
A single real book.
The first one, hot off the press, sent lovingly by proud publishers, maybe with a bow tied around it. A sweet note from an editor. Palpable excitement.
It has taken so long to get to this point.
First there was the writing. Starting with that glorious day when the seeds of the story floated down out of the sky and landed on my brain. That was the best writing day evvvvver. (hint: note the date of that post! So long ago!) But there was a problem! I was supposed to be writing a different book.
Well. I forced myself to finish that other book (and I have not so much as peeped at it since; note the photo in that post. It's quite clear where my mind was.)
And then at last, back to the NEW BOOK, with love. (It is so funny to me to see from old posts that I was looking at Silksinger copyedits while beginning this book. It was that long ago!)
And oh yeah, in the midst of it all: best distraction ever.
Months pass. Relearning life and writing and stuff. (By the way, I did not make that self-deadline. Not even close.)
Then. Finding a publisher who wants the new book. BIG DAY!
Actually finishing, glory halleluja! The most writing I have ever packed into three months. I still marvel at it.
And all that was only the beginning of this story's journey. It went from my hands to the publishers' very able hands, and much much much has happened on that end (follow this trail) and now it has come to the part where it is a grown-up book, about to get shoved out the door to make its fortune. With one of those little bundles tied to a stick over its shoulder. Essential fortune-seeking gear. I kiss it on the forehead, hug it to me, whisper it all my blessings, and have a hard time letting it go.
In the past couple of days I have received two of these marvelous skinny packages to my doorstep. TWO! Because everything about the publishing process of Daughter has been doubly awesome, because it is in the hands of both Little, Brown Books for Young Readers in the US and Hodder & Stoughton in the UK.
Side story: when I did school visits for the Dreamdark books, sometimes I'd speak to the really little kids too, even though they were years away from reading my books, and I loved the literalness of their minds. One of the best questions I got from a kindergardener: "How do you make the covers of your books so hard?
Kid, I don't even know, but I love them.
May I present ... hard covers!
*flourish of hands*
Child included for scale :-)
She is the best possible scale, because she was about the size of a jelly bean
when I started writing, on this exact weekend, in this exact place.
Hi pretties. Go forth and find happiness.
I tried to get a suitable picture of myself holding them looking thrilled, but I just look too bedraggled! I couldn't do it. I'm not at my best right now, alas. Grooming is not getting priority treatment. (No! Stop looking!) But I'm going to try to pull it together for upcoming giant amazing book tour! Details so soon!
Yay, real books!