Thursday, December 30, 2010

Objects in the Rearview Mirror

So a while back I saw this interview of Jennifer Crusie on a local Ohio television station. She was talking about Wild Ride which was about to come out in hardback and she commented that for her the work on that book ended months ago. That's how it is in this wild and crazy writing biz. You write the book and then it gets sucked into the production machine. It's all hurry-up-and-wait, and it could be two years between turning in the product and seeing it on the shelves. By then... you're kinda over it. Or at least I am.

Not to say that I don't still have warm fuzzies for my backlist and get giddy when people like The Ghost Shrink, but, well, it's been years and I'm a very forward thinking person. I always say when people ask me which is my favorite book that it's whichever one I'm working on next. The past is past and I'm not inclined to cling to it. But this can be kinda odd when you're doing promo for a print release and you have to think back past the six projects you've worked on in the interim to talk about that long-since-put-to-bed book.

I was working today on some forms for the shifter print release - which is still a long ways off and will feature (among others) Serengeti Storm, which feels like it came out forever ago. It was singularly weird to be talking marketing points on a book that is so far in the rearview mirror it looks like a speck to me. I couldn't help thinking of that Jennifer Crusie interview. I understood it today.

I feel so distant from my "early stuff". Which is comic when you think how new I am to this. I've only been published for two years. Will it be even more extreme as the years go by? I wonder if other authors feel this way. Or if they have a close relationship with all their books.

In a way I'm glad the books I've written in the past fade in my memory. I think it keeps me from getting too worked up about reactions to them - good or bad. The books aren't close to me anymore. They started out inside and worked their way off, growing more and more distant with each passing month. By the time they come out I can barely see them. And, more importantly, the faded memories help me stay hungry for the next project. I continue to be potential energy ready to be converted into kinetic awesomeness (yeah, I just busted out my physics nerddom).

I'm glad I'm not too fixated on the rearview mirror. It's hard to drive forward if you're only looking back. But it can be funny to talk about the books when you feel like you're talking about a milepost you passed three hours ago.

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