Thursday, May 1, 2014
I'm back in New York City, my plane touching down at just past midnight. Though I'm going to miss waking up next to my mom and opening her window to that view first thing each morning, lots of good and potentially good things are percolating. For example: Last night as my plane landed in lashing wind and rain, an email from my editor pinged my phone, informing me that my memoir, Jamaica Dreams, has been made an Amazon editor's pick! I am so grateful to everyone here who downloaded the book, and thank you too for the kind comments some of you left on Amazon, or tweeted, or emailed to me. I confess I was as scared as any writer is when a book is coming out, scared it would be roundly drubbed, worried some relatives would take issue with some of its content (one does not put one's skeletons in the public square, unless of course you are a writer and reckless that way), but in fact the whole experience has been exhilarating, and judgment (my own and others') be damned!
I'm just happy to be writing and editing, and thrilled to be associated with Shebooks, whose subscription-site launch will be in a week. You can buy the books singly for just $2.99 each, but if you want to subscribe for a modest monthly fee you can read anything at all from its catalogue, whenever and at will, including the two new books that are published each week, and trust me, there is some astonishing writing happening on Shebooks, including from some of our very own blog family here. I'm looking at you Brittany, Elizabeth, Maggie, Mary, Denise—all of whom have book deals with Shebooks. Brittany Tuttle's taut and beautifully crafted fable Stone and Spring is already out (it was named a hot new release on Amazon!), and the rest are coming up soon, and I hope more after that! If you haven't already, check out this brand new publishing venture for women at Shebooks.net. Though it's a start up that published the first titles in mid December, Shebooks is already a player in the rapidly developing ebook market: According to HuffPo, last month Shebooks accounted for 22 percent of all ebooks sold! Exciting stuff.
In other news, while waiting at the gate in Jamaica for my flight, I fielded another email inviting me to do a new assignment for the magazine I just finished that monster project for, so I guess they were happy with the work I did. I also got a call from someone else to come in and talk about a position that might be opening up in a field of work that is not publishing, but I remain open to transitioning into other kinds of opportunities. I am trying to squelch the part of my brain that says I need to just keep freelancing, that when I show up in my not-standard-issue interviewing attire, it doesn't quite work out; I'm too old or too fat or don't fit the profile or something. It helps a lot to have freelance work on tap, so if the permanent gigs keep being elusive, I can still be productive doing work I love.
I'm feeling all around blessed this morning. Last night my husband and my son were at the airport to meet me, and as I exited customs my son grabbed my suitcase and my husband my carry-on while handing me my coat and telling me to put it on because it was storming out there. Gabbing with them and catching up on our week apart, I walked with my hands swinging free to the car, feeling so taken care of. I am one very lucky duck indeed.
One last thing: I'm so glad that Tearful Dishwasher is blogging again. His post yesterday was a revelation to me, a whole new way of seeing this enterprise in which we are all engaged. If I can just keep his insights in view, there will be a whole lot less angst in the game.