Lately, I’ve been feeling a lot like a hamburger, not just any old hunk of beef lying on a bun, but a very specific hamburger. Remember the old Heinz commercial that starred an ordinary burger, waiting for the red sauce to drip down from the ketchup bottle hovering above, while Carol King sang “Anticipaaaaation?”
Instead of waiting for ketchup, I wait as the calendar creeps closer and closer to April 26th. The release date for DEFECTIVE. Some days, I want the ketchup to blast out of that bottle, but most days I want to pull the top part of the bun over my head.
When I decided to learn to write novels, I took a few online courses and did a ton of research. According to the online sources, most writers pen multiple novels before achieving publication. So, I typed and dreamed that if I worked hard and polished my craft, maybe my third book would be published—DEFECTIVE is my first book.
What the experts didn’t tell me is that publishing is not for the faint of heart. Honestly, the mere thought of strangers and reviewers reading it makes me shudder, and no offense, but the idea of friends and family reading it is even scarier. Writers often compare writing a book to the pain of childbirth. Not even close—I gave birth three times. It was much easier, and birth announcements read infinitely simpler than book reviews. A typical birth announcement:
Susan Sofayov gave birth to a 7lb 8oz boy on December 31, 2013 at 6:00 am.
No newspaper has ever published a birth announcement that read:
Susan Sofayov gave birth to an ugly baby boy at St. Clair Hospital. His head is slightly misshapen, and his ears stick out like butterfly wings, but she did a lovely job on the eyes. Unfortunately, his asymmetrical limbs overwhelm the whole. All in all, a weak first-time effort.
Yes, writing is a subjective field. What some people love others hate. Pini, my husband, told me to grow a thick skin before April. So, I went to Macy’s and the pretty young girl behind the Clinique counter informed me that they sell moisturizer, not skin thickening cream.
I hate living with this slow dripping condiment hovering above my head. I’m sick of asking myself the same question—scared day or excited day? Yesterday, an idea hit me, the perfect solution to calm my pre-publication anxiety. I downloaded the forms required to legally change my name and filed them in a folder titled “In Case of Emergency.” So, if the reviews for DEFECTIVE are good, my name will remain Susan Sofayov. If they are bad, Susan Sofayov will become my pen name, and my legal name will be changed to Jennifer Nightingale. -s
Happy New Year everyone.