A couple weeks ago, I opened an email from the art director of my publisher entitled "Cover Design Introduction."
Ahh ... covers.
You've heard the expression "Don't judge a book by its cover," which means don't judge something by its outward appearance.
But truth be told—don't we do that ALL THE TIME about many things?
Especially with books.
Does the cover make a potential reader curious about what's inside? Does it turn them on or repel them? Does it make them want to investigate further to find out what the book is really about?
We ask similar questions about titles too.
Covers—and titles—define the book's concept or "feel"—in seconds. A potential reader will either be turned on or turned off or feel neutral by that first impression, which will play a huge role in whether they pick up the book for a second look.
In 1978, I was a high school senior and an exchange student living in Knutsford England, and I wrote a personal essay for my hometown paper about my study abroad experience.
My first byline!
But it wasn’t until the Southampton Writers Conference in 2013, when I took the plunge and applied for Mary Karr’s memoir workshop that I finally—publicly—declared “I’m a writer.”
They don't call me a late-in-lifer for nothing!
When I soaked in Mary Karr’s wisdom as I sat around the table with 12 other writers, many of whom were much more accomplished than me, I realized how much I didn’t know AND I knew that I was in the right place.
The learning curve would be steep and I would get there someday. And someday has happened.
More details to come!
Now that I work with...
In my early forties, I began noticing an almost supernatural glow on the faces of certain friends when they talked about a new project or work they felt passionate about. Work where their gifts and the needs of the world were aligned.
Truth be told, I envied them—I wanted to glow too.
I had left a toxic work environment as a corporate lawyer in my late twenties, and between birthing and raising two sons I'd been searching for the right fit career path.
After my kids left for college, I finally found that path.
I put a stake in the ground and claimed my call as a writer. I set aside time to write. Went to writers conferences. Joined a writing group. Hired a book coach—and later trained to become one myself.
I finished one manuscript and started another.
And in the process, my life changed, in more ways than one.
Nearly a decade after saying "I am a writer"—something I had known my whole life but had been afraid to say out loud—I...
The email from the university press I'd been waiting for all summer was finally here.
Catch up on the previous steps in my publication journey here.
I scanned the email:
Both readers recommend publication.
After 4+ years and I don't know how many drafts, it looks like my memoir has found a home.
It's not a done deal yet—there's still a couple of approvals left to go and one more semi-substantial revision to address the very helpful comments from the peer reviewers—but I think this thing is going to happen.
I'll shout it from the rooftops once I have a publication date—but I'm not going to wait to celebrate.
This is a big f**ing milestone!
When I thought no one would care about my story.
When It felt too hard to revisit...
Writers go on a hero’s journey when they make the decision to get their story out of their heads and onto the page.
Queer writers go on a Queero’s Journey!
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