Last night (and still today) I have been grappling with an emotion I rarely feel . . . . envy. Oh sure, I sometimes see a woman who is 5'10 and slender and has long, perfect hair and wonder why I wasn't built like that . . .or I experience tech lust when I see a new piece of electronics that I am sure would make my writing career more effective and efficient . . . but that's about it. I have most everything I want in life, so why be jealous?
Not so last night. I was wandering through Powell's young adult section, looking for titles that I thought my kids would either like to read or I'd like them to read (grin) and there it was. HER BOOK. The book written by someone I've known for several years and consider a friend, albeit an absent one most of the time. Her book was right there on the shelf with a little sign that said "See _____ _______ at Wordstock". For those of you not in this area, Wordstock is a huge annual gathering of authors. They sit at tables signing books and answering questions and generally being idolized by fans. Wordstock is not interested in me. I've written more than 160 books to date but because they are not "retail" books and instead are "educational", they don't really have any interest in my being part of their show. (Yes, I know this as I tried and was rejected.) She wrote ONE BOOK and she is there. My teeth began to grind together. My heart beat sped up. I could feel jealousy wash over me like the unexpected dousing you get from standing too close to a mud puddle during high traffic. (And hey, come on, with metaphors like that, how could Wordstock NOT want me??)
For the rest of my evening, I argued with myself internally. Everyone wants me to try my hand at fiction and clearly, a fiction retail novel is the ONLY way to get recognized in many ways, so why don't I do it? Scared? Yes. Feeling incompetent? Very. Intimidated? Completely.
I went to bed with these thoughts running around my head. I dreamt about them. I woke at dawn with them. I then said, Hey . . I know what I could write about . . . .And now, my head is spinning with the idea of a potential young adult novel. I'm having trouble concentrating on what I need to think about (a vocabulary book testing 600 words--riveting eh?).
So, I'm jealous but maybe I'm motivated? Or maybe this idea will just fade out when I try to put it on paper. Maybe I just changed the course of my career--and maybe I will throw this whole idea out with today's trash and forget it all ever happened. Stay tuned.