Congrats! You have successfully installed "Author" to your hard life. You have either by publisher, or independently, wrote, edit, and then published your first book. You deserve to celebrate the achievement many people dream about but for whatever reasons, never achieve. Now here's what nobody ever talks about.
After Josey's Mountain published and made it so big, I couldn't wait for someone to ask me,
"So, what do you do for a living?"
I puffed up with pride, lifted my chin, smiled as if I rose above the fray of soul crushing mundane employment and said very dramatically; "I'm an author."
Here are the usual responses and none of which I expected.
"Oh, you write romance? So you write mommy porn. Niiice." (Mommy Porn is NOT romance novels. Mommy Porn is a clean house, a babysitter and giant margarita on the beach, stupid.)
"Oh, you write romance? When are you going to write a real piece of literature?" (Groans, feels my pride hit the dirt wondering what real literature really is while I run to a library to find the section, Real Literature, and the section, Crap that some housewife wrote. Nope no section like that. I've looked.
"Oh, you write stuff like Fifty Shades?" (That question is followed by this accusatory stare that I'm hiding whips and chains in my house and maybe they shouldn't allow their kids to come over anymore. And then their husbands eyes light up wondering if under my jeans and stained up T shirt I'm really wearing leathers and lace.)
"Oh, you must be rolling in the dough." (If you mean pancake batter, then yes. If you mean life changing money, then no. I still struggle to pay some bills.)
"When are you going to give up that day dream and get a real job?" (Most authors I know still work because they HAVE to.)
"You're an author? You don't look like an author." (Runs to buy a tweed suit and a cherry pipe.)
And then, last but not least. Be careful mentioning author to your dentist. No lie, I went in to see about having a crown replaced and suddenly I'm presented with an estimate roughly similar to sending my entire family to Hawaii for a eight month luxury vacation. It's a crown, a piece of porcelain shoved up into my gums. I could break a coffee cup and use some super glue, which I still might end up doing.
So, when someone ask you if you're an author. Say and do this. "Damn right." then run like hell.
I don't want to end this on a negative note. In all seriousness. Congratulations. You are one of us. One of the chosen few who painted a picture of your soul with written words. It's beautiful, and no matter what, literature. I think. I'll let you know if Barnes and Nobles opens a new section just for Crap that housewives wrote.
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