Holding My Breath …

I took my first completed “Storybooks You Can Color” to the print shop yesterday morning.

I expected to post pictures for you–selfies of me smiling with the printer guy.

I have no idea why. That’s so not my style. Still, I keep picturing a blog post of me, the printer, the book, and big smiles. Weird.

Plus, the moment of delivering the completed book felt kind of anticlimactic. The printer saved my pdf files, confirmed the details of paper weight and type, and said they’d have a proof for me to see today or soon after.

I’d imagined yesterday to be such a big moment that my husband took an hour off of work to meet me and our kiddo for a celebratory breakfast after I finished at the print shop.

Having breakfast at a diner downtown on a weekday felt adventurous and fun, but something has left me feeling slightly off kilter.

I’ve already started final drawings for the next book, and I’m really enjoying the re-drawing process, adding all kinds of details I hadn’t thought of when I drafted it ages ago.

And yet, the first book is kind of in limbo. Maybe this is normal? I guess I’ve never worked on projects that depended on other people so much. Even essays I’ve published pretty much go from my fingertips to print, just the brief (and rewarding) conversation with an editor here and there.

But now, the book is literally out of my hands and either lingering on a computer in the print shop downtown, or printed and waiting for cutting and stapling on a counter among other projects.

I hate to admit it, but the cliche is true — this feels a tiny bit like trusting someone else to take care of my child. I want to call the print shop and ask how it’s going.

Okay, lesson #473 in art and life — collaboration requires trust and letting go. Time to trust the printer and all the work leading up to this moment, let that book go because there is nothing more for me to do at the moment, and get back to working on the next one.

Maybe next week I’ll post a selfie of me with the printer and the proof? Geez. Kind of holding my breath … See you next week with more news, hopefully.

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4 Responses to Holding My Breath …

  1. Rose L. says:

    I would be so excited, but everyone has different feelings. I am so proud you have taken this last big step. I bet when it is in your hands you will be elated. It is hard to leave it up to someone else to do all the finishing. Several women in Chrysalis have books and they get to sitting on the edge of their seats waiting to get it in hand! One woman, B. K. Froman, has written 6 books (3 under a pseudonym) and they are great! Highly recommend them! We all get excited with each published as we all had a little hand in it what with helping during Chrysalis. Oh, and the series of books by Lisa Nowak are top notch!

  2. Solveig says:

    Congratulations on taking this major step. I am curious to see that selfie 🙂

  3. Alex Hurst says:

    I think it’s normal. You probably won’t have that feeling of elation until you get the proof back, or you have the stack of your first run. There’s something different in having a digital PDF sent off, and holding the tangible item in your hands. It will feel real once you pick it up, I’m sure.

    It could also be you’re waiting to celebrate, because the proof might need adjusting, and you inherently know that would be disappointing after the fanfare. 🙂

  4. lori says:

    Congratulations! I imagine I would share that sense of leaving my baby in someone’s care I wasn’t quite sure of, as well 😉 (not that I’ve published anything!) But Anne Lamott in her awesome book on writing, Bird by Bird, talks about a similar feeling when she sends her work to theeditors or for publishing. I don’t think you’re alone in it. Hope you’re pleased with results!

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