Because I like for you to have a new post on Monday morning, but it’s Sunday night as I write this and I’m totally strapped for a brilliant blogging idea, I’m going to pretend I get emails all the time with questions that I could compile into a Frequently Asked Questions section and now I’m pulling a couple of them out at random. So remember, these questions are made up. But I’m answering them like you actually care. (P.S. I blame the post-idea-drought on a funny saying Michael found online the other day:
Blogging: Never have so many with so little to say said so much to so few.
It’s really true, isn’t it? On with the Frequently Asked Questions:
What’s the deal with your writing these days? Well, I’ll tell ya. My memoir sits in publishing limbo. There was some interest but no offer. It was the ultimate not-personal-just-business sort of experience since I got a lot of encouragement about the writing, but the biggest no-factor was that unfortunately the cancer story isn’t all that unique and tragically, no one knows who you are (which in publishing terms is put in much kinder terms: You don’t have a strong enough platform.) In case you’re wondering, I’m totally cool about the whole thing. I still believe that book will be published someday. I just might have to accomplish some other things first.
Which brings me to book #2. I wrote a novel next. I’d always intended to pursue fiction. I would love to be in the great, beautiful world of storytelling. So that’s what I’m going for. That manuscript is in my agent’s corner now. She’ll tell me if the idea is marketable and, if so, then how much revision it will take to make the marketable idea actually ready for the market. I have no idea what will come of this book, if anything. And, weirdly, I’m cool with this too. It was my first, and there are lots and lots of published authors who didn’t get their first book published first, if ever. Yikes.
Which brings me to book #3. I’ve barely begun this one. It’s sort of in the outline stage. The think-about-it stage. And while it marinates I’m catching up on those InStyle magazines and watching a lot of 8 and 10-year-old basketball and playing a little Super Mario Brothers Wii. I’m going to kick it into gear soon and throw myself into the joy of writing another whole book, though. And you know what that makes me realize? I’m a writer. Published or no. And that’s deeply satisfying.
Hey, remember when you had cancer? Do you ever think about that?
I think about it all the time. I think about it when I look in the mirror, and my right shoulder looks a little smaller than my left. I think about it whenever my kids do anything that I’m glad I lived to see. I think about it whenever I laugh. Whenever I make plans and know that sometimes plans don’t work out and all we really have is today. Whenever I have a cold and realize I can totally take it, because I beat so much worse. Whenever I see a Livestrong bracelet. Whenever I think of July 13, 2010, when I’ll be five years cancer-free and cured. I love to think about it, because it changed me. And it was awful. And I survived it.
Did you paint your hallway yet?
No. Darn it.
What’s your favorite word? It’s so funny you should ask that, because I’ve been thinking about it lately. My favorite word is BRAVE. I think everyone pretty much has to define for oneself what being brave will mean for them. But whatever that thing is for each of us, I think it’s definitely something we should pursue.
If you could change one thing about yourself…
I think one of the most beautiful things about being human, is that we grow and change. And the biggest change I want to see in my life is how much I give. I want to give money and time. I want to give myself. And I don’t know for sure how to do it. And it overwhelms me to think about how much the world needs. But I know I have a part to play in all the giving, and I really want to discover that part.
What’s Jake doing right this very second?
He’s pouncing around the house in a lion costume John Michael wore when he was 1. Never a boring moment, People, I’m tellin’ ya.