Thursday, October 11, 2012

Chapbook Rookie: Something Special, Maybe?

I have a diaries from my adolescence spanning 11 to 17 years old. A few months ago when I was rereading them I found this passage:

Yes, I did refer to my diary as "you" as though I was talking to a friend. I also trailed off partway through the sentence. But on April, 3 1994 at 12 years, 9 months, and 12 days old, I dreamed up the day when my writing might be published as a book. When I might "do something special."

Today, at 31 years, 3 months, and 19 days old, something did occur. Something I did. Something special.

Holding my chapbook in my hands is strange. They are sitting next to me on the couch in the Priority Mail box. Sal answered the doorbell when the mail carrier delivered them earlier today, but I didn't hear it due to the white noise blasting through my headphones while I worked. The next thing I knew, Sal was sliding open the pocket door to the office saying something like, "Congrats, published author!" camera in hand, ready to capture the look on my face when I saw the package and realized what was inside. Someday I'll share that picture. Let's just say I was having a bad hair day.

I was terrified to open it, but I had no reason to be. Finishing Line Press produces beautiful chapbooks and my cover artist beautifully illustrated my imaginings. They have a deep brown ribbon and a spine even. I've never seen a chapbook bound this way, but I love it. It's very book-like.

At first I didn't know what I was feeling. I didn't really feel anything except overwhelmed, perhaps worried about getting back to work. I've since slid toward a simmering excitement. This is where I am. This is my something special. This slow boil. This 18 1/2 year-old dream come true.
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