Last summer while attending an educators’ conference, I heard of an opportunity to travel to China. Yes. China. You ask most people where in the world they’d want to go, and I’m pretty sure China would not make most people’s lists.
But go I did. 10 days in a communist country. 10 wonderful, amazing, soul-searching days (Not quite Eat. Pray. Love…. maybe the straight to DVD version). Without going into too much, my mental state prior to this expedition was fragile at best. Life has a way of coming at you and trying to tear you down, and I began to wonder if it was possible to have a mid-life crisis at 28.
When I approached the Great Wall, I saw it for its symbolic worth. Anyone who knows me can tell you I don’t put much stock in symbolism. I don’t like to tell my readers what to think and feel, and don’t like it when authors do the same to me. If I want to read and see Piggy’s darn glasses as meaning something completely different from some archaic critic or my 9th grade Honors English teacher, so be it.
But there was the darn Great Wall and it suddenly meant something to me. It was conflict and struggle personified. It was life not turning out how I planned. It was a symbol that things were going to be really hard, darn right impossible at times in the coming months. But I could climb it. There in the sweltering heat, I climbed and climbed. Out of the group of 30 educators who went about 6 of us climbed. The rest took a cable car up. As I climbed and climbed the steep, jagged steps I stopped many times. This journey wasn’t easy. I would have to acknowledge my limits. Even when I reached the top, so damn proud of what my boney, out of shape, high blood pressure, never does anything athletic body could do, the fight wasn’t over. Every 50 feet of flat-ish walkway is followed by more crazy stairs.
Even when the fight seems over more obstacles will come. And you just got to keep going.
Climbing the Great Wall was my favorite moment in China. That’s saying a lot because I had 10 brilliant days. And then I got back. Reality hit. Delta made me miss my flight. I cried in the airport bathroom. And things got rough again. I haven’t made it back to the top of the Great Wall, but I’m climbing.
With some help this time…
I have been offered and accepted a three book deal with Entangled Publishing. Entangled Publishing is a small, indie publisher. In their own words:
“Entangled Publishing utilizes a bold new business model to bridge the gap between traditional and indie publishing, giving our authors the best of both worlds. We implement the agency model across all departments at Entangled, which means everyone from the copy editor to the marketing director has a financial stake in your book.”
The publishing business isn’t what it used to be. It’s changing. In a dream world: writer creates book, gets agent, and lands crazy super deal with major publishing house. But in a HIGHLY competitive market where traditional publishing is changing, and we are slowly moving into an e-book world, it is exciting to be working with a publisher who is on the cutting edge.
Will my book be in every bookstore? No. Will it be available to anyone who has access to a computer? Heck yes. Entangled offers both ebook and print copies of their clients’ books on websites such as Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com.
This is it. I will be a published author. I’ll do blog interviews and signings. I’ll get to talk about writing and experience the process that so many before me have gone through. My first time out will no doubt miss that best-seller list, but I WILL BE A PUBLISHED AUTHOR.
and who knows where I go from here.
I’ll keep climbing that Great Wall.
Wish me luck 🙂
…and buy my book…in March!!!!! (wink!)