Tomorrow is blast off day for my baby, One Way or Another. It's about Goddamn time too. This book publishing business is valium-slow. I wrote the book at the beginning of 2010. It took me six weeks to write it. It took three months to get shortlisted in the dear departed Queensland Literary Awards (R.I.P) . It took seven months of thumb twiddling for one publishing house to lose it. One week from then to get a kick-ass agent, Ms Sophie Hamley from Camerons Management and then six weeks or so to get Black Inc to step up and offer me a contract. Then came four months of editing with the most brilliant editor, Denise O;Dea and then another five months to do all the fiddly bits, like endorsements, cover design, printing, distributing, marketing etc.....and now....dadadadada...drum rollllllll.....we arrive at the book launch. But of course it's not like I'm launching it as an author-virgin because the book has actually already been in bookstores and libraries for weeks.
The incredibly charming, clever and hilarious Benjamin Law is my launcher. He plans on embarrassing me wickedly before my guests tomorrow night. I have friends flying in from Sydney and Melbourne. Eldest son, Ben is attending. Yippee. I have friends from school coming who I haven't seen in thirty years. My, how we all will have changed. Ex-boyfriends, the girl I first smoked pot with, other groupies, new writer friends, my little sister....and whoever else might show up.
I am so proud of myself for having persisted with the dream of publishing a book. It has taken more than thirty years to get here so there will be champagne showers, that's for sure.
Writing is a lonely profession for much of the time and I've spent the last four years or so as an agoraphobic hermit. This is actually the first night out away from the kids in two years!!! I feel so blessed to be getting ready for this launch. Five years ago I was literally homeless, living in a two-room tent in a caravan park, no car, no possessions. Just me and my family who had gone belly-up financially. We had fallen off the cliff. Two adult uni students and six kids between us ....it just snapped and we had nothing but each other.
Now, five years later, I have a stupid Bachelor of Law and Justice degree lying around somewhere, my husband is a Primary School teacher with full-time work, the kids are all healthy and happy and I am about to be a celebrated author....celebrated by me and my family at the very least.
Life can and does turn around. One Way or Another.
More about the launch from hangover central on Saturday morning....with photos.