I am sitting in a hotel room in Phoenix, waiting for my husband to finish his business at a conference so we can go to the Grand Canyon tomorrow. This seems like a perfect opportunity to indulge in some deep thinking about the possibilities for my next book, but it’s just not happening. And I’ve just realized the problem. And it’s not just waiting and hoping for some good book reviews and fretting over whether THE ACCIDENT AT 13th AND JEFFERSON will be a hit.
I’m going to talk about something that writers usually don’t tell you. Finishing a book that you’ve worked on for years is a happy event. Then after the champagne is drunk, the files are formatted and proofread and proofread some more, the cover art is finished, and the book is actually for sale, a strange thing happens.
You suddenly realize that the characters in the book are gone from your life. They’ve been your constant companions and you’ve thought and even dreamed about them, and now they only exist in the mind’s eyes of your readers as they are reading your book. I really miss them all. I need some time to get over this feeling before I can begin to think about starting another book.
A writer lives in two worlds, the real one and the fictional one, and they both cause emotional fallout. Sometimes I think it’s a self induced form of mental illness. Feeling emotional about people who never existed because you made them up, I mean. Anyway, here’s lifting a glass to Josh and Max, and Tom and Bonnie, and Elaine and Dave, and everyone else, wherever you are tonight. I hope in the hands of a reader who appreciates you. I miss you all.