As someone who writes paranormal YA novels, I can say definitively that most of the time reality is not so much fun. Reality is filled with bills, errands, sick kids, frustrating circumstances, insurance companies, hard decisions, disappointments, etc. This is probably why I choose to inject my stories with a healthy does of unreality.
However. Sometimes reality is so amazing it feels surreal. The other night I was in the library editing. Again. Some more. I'm on my third round since Erica sent me edits, and I'm tired, and I feel like I'm swimming in sentences and images and that Evie and the gang are actual members of my life (I certainly spend more time with them than I do any of my friends).
As I was reading a paragraph and trying to figure out how to smooth out a particularly grouchy sentence, it hit me.
This is a book.
It's going to be a real, live book, that will be in bookstores, that people will be able to buy and take home and hold in their hands and read. Having spent my entire life loving and living in books, this is kind of overwhelming.
I know it should be obvious, since it's a sequel and I'm writing it under contract, but it's easy to get so lost in the Word document and edits and things that are wrong that I lose the big picture. And the big picture is so amazing, so unbelievable, it's just plain surreal. I nearly had an out-of-body experience as that hit me. Fortunately I was sitting next to a poster of Neil Gaiman, and his enigmatic grin always reminds me that I'm never as good as I can be. (In a nice way, of course.)
I know I'm living a dream (mine, and probably many of yours) and it's incredible. It's a buttload of work (and I never use the phrase buttload lightly), it's exhausting, it can be very stressful, but when you get right down to the heart of it, it's the best possible reality I could imagine.
And that's saying a lot.
Speaking of surreal, check out the HarperTeen booth at Book Expo America:
ACRONYM! That's EVIE! In a lightbox! As a poster! At BEA!
Also, although I don't have her permission to post this picture, my agent Michelle Wolfson looks so freaking cute I can't imagine she'd object. And say hi to Cristina, my FABULOUS marketing director! Love, love, love.
(Also, have you entered the giveaway to win an ARC of PARANORMALCY and Laini Taylor's delicious Lips Touch yet?)
(UPDATE! Today just keeps getting awesomer. Found out from a fab book blogger than an excerpt from the first chapter is up on HarperTeen's website!)