Brushing Aside Tumbleweeds + Book Thoughts

So remember that time I started a blog and then was all like Knowing me, I probably won’t post very frequently ha ha ha and then almost four months went by without me posting again? I’d like to say I did that on purpose, but, uh… Yeah…

In my defense, a.) things have been a little busy on the home front and b.) no one is reading this as of yet, anyway, so I don’t feel as if I’ve put very many people off (that’s for down the road, obviously). Also, talking about me is not something I generally enjoy, so working up the required energy to overcome the slightly higher inertia for this sort of thing takes a bit more time. Well, it takes time, period — that rare and precious commodity that I think was the resource they were after in the movie Avatar — but you can see where I’m going with this.

In personal news, I recently turned 30, which wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. However, I also always assumed that’s when they whisked you away to the nursing home kicking and screaming, so for any soon to be thirty-ites, your mileage may vary on that. In addition to a truly wonderful surprise party courtesy of my wife, I received a pretty special belated present:

IMG_2461

Yes, that’s my book. It is currently slated for release on September 27th, 2016 (that’s a Tuesday, for those keeping track). It has characters, and dialogue, and occasionally, really, really lousy jokes. There might be a plot in there — I’m not sure, to be perfectly honest. Oh, and there are words! Lots of them. Some even arranged in ways that make sense (usually not, though).

I, personally, have never held a book with my name on the cover (well, aside from the one I did in 4th grade called “Will You Help Me With My Homework?”, when I had to use those tiny sticker letters for the cover that were impossible to pull off the sheet without some kind of neurosurgical training… *shudder*) and, honestly, it’s a strange feeling. I’m also a strange person, so that might be an easy explanation — Occam’s razor and all that. My agent Hannah asked me about a year ago, after we’d just sold it, if the reality of being an author had started to set in yet, and to be honest, it hadn’t. I think there’s a certain shock element to it — the “I can’t believe this is actually happening” effect, commonly abbreviated in medical speak as WTF — but it still felt like a distant, surreal thing. Fast forward to now, and once I flipped the pages for the first time — pages that had, to that point, been almost exclusively digital — things suddenly started to feel exponentially more real. People are actually going to read this (maybe more people than just my parents and wife) and that is simultaneously exhilarating and unbelievably terrifying.

Complete strangers are going to judge this book, as they should because life is subjective. I can already tell you that my writing style (a generous term for it, I think. I prefer “word vomiting”) isn’t for everyone. And that’s cool. I can live with that. Out of the gate, I think being able to disassociate book criticism from personal criticism is going to be tough for me because — and many people have already touched on this — sharing any creative work invariably means that you’re sharing a part of you. But that very idea that people I’ve never met before, who I probably never will, are going to form opinions about it, be they good or bad…

Exhilarating and unbelievably terrifying.

For me, if you asked me right now what I hoped for from this endeavor, I’d say a book that readers enjoy. I don’t need to set the literary world on fire (though I’ve got my book of matches ready, just in case). I’m just hoping to tell a good story, maybe earn a laugh or two along the way, and hopefully get the chance to do it again in the future. I’m not being falsely modest when I say that sometimes I wonder how I even got here. But whatever happens, I’m proud to call this book my own. I think, at the end of the day, that’s all I could have asked for.

Anyway, I’ll talk more about the book in the weeks and months ahead, I’m sure, as there’s still some time until its release. If you’d like to pre-order it, you can find some handy links to some common booksellers on the book’s S&S page. If you prefer to support your local bookstore, the IndieBound link here can hook you up to your local shop (like the ever-awesome Word) or if you’d like to skip that and go right to the online corporate book goliath (are we still calling them that?), you can pre-order it on Amazon here.

Finally, two quick notes: first, a huge thank you to Tottenham Hotspurs, for bringing some joy to an otherwise dour Arsenal season, and second, Uncharted 4 is really, really good. If you want to study a masterclass in dialogue in any medium, look no further.

That about wraps that up. See you again in… Oh, four or five months.

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