distractions / memories / writing

Just Another Blissfully Unaware Blog Post

Oh, internet. I love you, I do. But you’re making it very difficult to stay a blissfully unaware, outwardly confident person.* It’s been like walking into a crowded cocktail party and discovering everyone is talking about you and then later you realize you’ve got your pantyhose bunched up in your skirt. Assuming you wear pantyhose. Or, it’s like you only think people are talking about you, you swear you’ve overheard someone saying your name… but no. That’s all in your head. What happens is you walk into that cocktail party, and you smooth your skirt, and you smile and… no one looks up. Not ten minutes later you’re sneaking out the back door with an empty glass in hand and running across the damp lawn before anyone sees your escape and when people ask if you were there tomorrow you’ll say, “What party?”

Oops. Can you tell I get a tad nervous at cocktail parties?

Let me tell you some things *not* having to do with catastrophic cocktail parties.

  • I should be able to give away a signed ARC (advance reading copy) or two of Imaginary Girls soon. Hopefully people will enter the giveaway! I’m also getting some Imaginary Girls bookmarks made, and I’ll give away a bunch of those too, assuming they turn out all right. I’ll announce the giveaway on my Facebook page and Twitter, so keep an eye out if you want to win an ARC. Otherwise, you’ll have to wait for June to read the book… which isn’t that far away!
  • My birthday is tomorrow. (Yesterday was E’s birthday, and today is the anniversary of the day we got married!) Usually I hate my birthday—for years I despised the day and didn’t want to celebrate because I felt like it was a marker of all the things I didn’t accomplish that past year. But I realized, this year, that I can’t say that anymore. There’s no reason to hate my birthday. I don’t have those same regrets. It’s… a nice feeling yet also perplexing because I don’t know what to complain about now.
  • Sometimes you run into people just once in your life and your thoughts keep drifting back to them. On my last day at the MacDowell Colony, I’d switched from the bus home to the train (because I got so motion-sick on the way up) and in order to get to the train station in Vermont, I had to order a taxi. The woman who picked me up, S., owned the taxi service but came to get me herself because she was intrigued by my pickup address at the colony. We talked the whole way to Vermont. I told her about MacDowell and how, yes, it really is entirely free and every artist should try to apply because you never know and all you need is a spare two weeks. I learned that she’s a photographer. I learned that she reads tarot cards and that she’s designing her own deck. I learned how she’d just lost her sister, weeks before. I learned that she’s written two children’s books but stopped sending them out after one rejection (and I told her I’ve been there and to keep trying and to try joining SCBWI and look into a local chapter). I learned that she grew up in her small Vermont town, married and had kids and got divorced, and came out and was embraced and supported by everyone who knew her. I learned how close she is with her kids, grown now and living their own lives. I learned that she has no time to do her art with all the hours she works, and we talked about how frustrating that is and how that had been my life up until recently. I keep thinking about S., and I hope things turn out well for her. She left me at the train station, lifted my enormous suitcase (held together with gaffer’s tape because I couldn’t zip it closed) from the trunk, said, “Blessed be,” and stayed to make sure I found my way in all right. I hope she finds her happiness.

* In other words, I am not reading reviews. Anywhere. I may never log in to Goodreads again in this lifetime. So if you’re a blogger and wrote a kind review you wanted me to see, I’m sorry, but I haven’t and probably won’t because I’m not going looking. Also, sometimes I forget to check the light before I cross the street.

5 thoughts on “Just Another Blissfully Unaware Blog Post

  1. I love the story about your taxi driver. I hope that maybe a tiny piece of her ends up in your fiction someday.

    And I just want to add that my husband and I also got married right around our birthdays — exactly one week after his and one day after mine. Some people thought it was strange we’d want to be married so close to our birthdays (some even warned I might get “fewer presents” this way, which cracks me up because they clearly don’t know how we operate) but I feel like it’s just lots of happy events all crowded together.🙂

    More power to you for staying away from reading anything that might stress you out or distract you from what really matters.

  2. I have to avoid places like Good Reads like the plague, unfortunately. And on Amazon last week, someone posted a review of my new book that was clearly not about my book. I can’t even imagine they read my book based on their review! Not that I expect all glowing reviews, but this one was so negative it seemed like it had to be some kind of joke! 😉

  3. Happy birthday/anniversary! My birthday is Thursday, and I’m dreading it for the same reason you used to dread your birthday. Perhaps I will be on the other side with you one of these birthdays!

    How do I find out about the colony? It certainly sounds like something that would really kickstart my writing and be beneficial.

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