Tuesday, May 1, 2012

June 29, 2010: What WERE we thinking?

I wrote this almost two years ago, June 29, 2010. I am fascinated reading this now, one week before the release of our book, Perfect Chaos (St. Martin's Press, 2012). It all still holds true!
One day after Linea's graduation we received an offer from a major book publisher for our book. WOW!! We were and still are ecstatic! First came the news from our agent that the editor wanted to talk to us. Two working days later we received an offer from the publisher and after a couple of days of back and forth with our agent we accepted it. We were both completely excited and the whole thing seemed impossibly surreal. The book proposal went into submission the week of June 1st and we received the offer the next week. Our agent told us the speed of this was quite unbelievable particularly in this current market but we attribute it to her ability to push us further and further with a better, more concise and compelling proposal. The excitement continues but the first night (very late into the night, actually) it hit me. This is the real thing. Our book will be published. In stores and on bookshelves across the nation and perhaps beyond. What WERE we thinking? Suddenly I was insecure. The "what if's" flew like bats into my bedroom and into my worrying mind. What if we had bad reviews? What would a negative comment do to my daughter? What if my colleagues thought I was not "academic" enough by sharing a very personal memoir of a devastating illness? I hadn't had such small (what about the cover??) and long-range (what will my grandchildren think about this twenty years from now?) worries since I the births of my two daughters. Around and around my mind went until finally it settled on trust in our work, our agent, our editor and the world at large. We are committed to sharing our story with continued efforts to increasing understanding and support for people with mental illnesses and their families and to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness that adds another layer of pain to these illnesses. What a journey!