This is how my horoscope started this morning:
Even if your life seems to be unfolding as planned, you still aren’t sure that you should trust the good news.
Sometimes my horoscopes are amusingly spot-on.
I mentioned it on Twitter which started a conversation with a longtime writer friend, Alexis Kienlen, about feeling overwhelmed by this whole publication process and fear and anxiety and how people don’t seem to talk about that part of it much.
I said I’d blog about it, so here we go.
I was lucky enough to know a few people who had been on this publication ride before, so the fact that success feels so much like nausea did not come as a complete surprise, even though the practical advice was often hard to focus on with all the head-spinning.
But it hasn’t worn off. It’s mostly gotten worse.
I am still overwhelmed. I keep waiting to get back down to whelmed, but that does not seem to be happening.
I didn’t really expect that after your wildest dreams come true you end up in this post-dream land that just keeps going and there is an extreme lack of informative signage to direct the way forward and you can’t really go back.
And I keep thinking to myself, I don’t know what I’m doing here.
All I did was write a book.
Remember this post? Yeah, I’m still there, expecting to be mauled or stabbed or something. I have good days and I have not-so-good days and I spend a great deal of time wanting to crawl under my desk and cry.
To date, I have not yet crawled under the desk. I’ve cried a lot, but I’m a crier anyway.
I find it surprisingly difficult to react with equal enthusiasm when someone says to me “this is so Exciting!” because it is Exciting but it’s also kind of Terrifying and in my head, Terrifying usually wins out because Exciting tires easily.
I said in that post from way back in September that the best thing I can do is be honest.
So this is me being honest.
Today there is only a sad snowball worth of snow left by the tree outside my window. There is a fluffy kitten curled up in between my scanner and my printer because she seems to find that comfortable. I have half a cup of slowly cooling coffee on my desk and all my Arcade Fire albums on repeat.
I have two Scrivener documents open, one with tomorrow’s flax-golden tale which needs one more sentence and a title, and the other with what appears to be my next novel. I am simultaneously in love with this not-quite-novel-yet and petrified that it will not be as good as the circus because it is very, very different. It’s glass where the circus is paper. It needs more plot.
I am starting to get responses from readers with advance copies of THE NIGHT CIRCUS and they are amazing and delightful and they mean more to me than I can express properly. There should be better ways to say thank you.
I feel like there are a million things I am supposed to be doing but I don’t know what they are so I end up confused and anxious rather frequently.
I had a mild panic attack the other day just trying to make dinner reservations. I am still upset about last night’s Top Chef elimination.
I am wondering to myself why I feel the need to inform the internet that I’m scared, but I do.
And I feel like I need to resist the urge to fold my life back up again. Just a little.
The aforementioned horoscope for today ends with:
make a choice and then take a few healthy steps in the direction you want to go.
Still working on that. But I have new shoes. That should help.