Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sparkle! Sparkle!

Someone recently suggested I think about what might have happened to my books if they had been written by a current famous award-winning young adult novelist. At first I just chuckled, then thought, hmm. So I pulled on this famous author's sparkly celebrity jacket--nice buttons! shiny pockets! tassels!--and had some fun.

First, of course, my books soared in both popularity and critical acclaim. Amazon practically toppled over from the sudden weight of my fameiness. And the fans! I could barely keep up with my e-mail. Librarians drooled over me so much I feared for my sparkly jacket. And boy-o-boy the invitations! I received invites to speak at ALA, BEA, ALAN, MLA, and NSA, plus I received every state award in the U.S. of A.. And, need I say the word? Printz. Australia anointed me with a specially created, "Magnificent American Author" award, and, world-wide, teens in every country begged for me to grace their MySpace and Facebook pages, if not their shores. So I did all that.

By the time I got home, though (exhausted, in need of a nap) and hung my sparkly jacket in the closet, I knew it was time to eat a big slice of reality pie. (Never my favorite. I prefer apple.)

If this said famous author had written my books, instead of the ones said famous author actually wrote, well, maybe said famous author would not have ended up so famous. Or, if I had written said famous author's books instead of my own, they might have ended up awardless and without acclaim, tossed unloved onto the remainder heap of that long good night. Face it, the personality of the author has a lot to do with his or her success in the world. (Excuse me a moment while I shed a tear over my own personality. Or, as some might put it, the lack thereof.)

So, when I finished my pie, I knew I had to return the sparkly celebrity jacket to its rightful owner. (Drat. Plus I had to send it to the cleaners first. Sparkles cost buckets of $$ to clean! And lets not talk about tassels.) Still, I have no regrets. I will always cherish the memory of my books laughing in the sun, basking in the warmth of the world's embrace, blushing at being hailed as masterful achievements, giggling with delighted embarrassment when their naked covers turned up on You Tube.

A girl's gotta dream.


C.K. said...

Personally, I think you could've skipped the sending the jacket to the cleaners step and let the said celebrity spring for that :) He/she surely has people to take care of such mundane matters on his/her behalf. And lots of sparkly $ to pay for it too.

I have a difficult time understanding why someone's personality would matter one bit to readers of their books but I think my personality is precisely what gets in the way of understanding that.

I don't mind gets all boggled (like the person in Munch's Scream painting) when I think about these things. And I'm so clueless that I don't even know what most of those acronyms you mentioned actually stand for.

Pie sounds like a good idea. I'm going to concentrate on the pie.

Kathleen Jeffrie Johnson said...

You're right about letting the famous author pay for his/her own sparkles! Shoulda thought of that . . .

I agree that a reader is not going to care about an author's personality. I just meant that someone with an outgoing, extroverted, even charming personality will probably have an easier and more successful time navigating the demands of the business side of writing: the readings, conventions, presentations and school visits, etc. I, myself, am with you on the screaming Munch painting, as I don't do any of those things. Well, I've done a couple of conventions.

As for the acronyms, they are (ALA) American Library Association; (BEA) Book Expo America (I think); (ALAN) Adolescent Literature something-or-other; (MLA) Maryland Library Association; and(NSA) the National Security Agency. Hey, it could happen . . .

Right now, I think we both need a piece of apple pie!

C.K. said...

I just meant that someone with an outgoing, extroverted, even charming personality will probably have an easier and more successful time navigating the demands of the business side of writing: the readings, conventions, presentations and school visitsOkay, I see what you mean - that makes total sense. Sadly, I can't even tolerate Facebook very well, let alone those other things you mentioned. I even sort of deleted my account today. Well, I started the deletion process. Supposedly it takes 2 weeks and if you sign in during that time they decide you really want to stay. I figure if I change my mind about it I can always start over later. Or maybe just hitting delete and then resetting the process by signing in could have a therapeutic effect, like an online smudging.

Thanks for the acronym help. I really feel like I should know this stuff. Would you like ice cream with your pie? I'm serving up two heaping slices here...

Kathleen Jeffrie Johnson said...

I'll be sad to see you leave Facebook, but it's important that you are comfortable. It sounds like there is some wiggle-room concerning your exit, though. And for sure you can disappear and reappear as you wish. Sort of like a firefly.

I really like the idea of an internal smudge! Sign off, walk away and thereby delete the pressure/tension/distress. I think I do that myself, during my "drifts."

The main thing is, you have choices.

And, yes, please, ice cream. :->