A somewhat battered box arrived on the Brown Truck of Happiness (TM) earlier this week. It contained author’s copies of a non-fiction book. This is my first solo monograph. I’ve done articles and contributed chapters, illustrations, and sections to edited volumes, but this one is all mine, for good or ill.
I opened the lid, cut the tape on the protective wrapper around the stack-o-books and lifted out a rather slim volume. It’s amazing how small the page-count gets once all is set and done. But there’s the correct picture on the cover, and my name on it and *gulp* my non-fiction writing has been loosed upon the world once more.
It’s strange. After so much fiction, all electronic, to have a “real” book, a history book, with my name as the only one on the cover is a shivery feeling. I can stand in a bookstore, or look on the library shelves, and say “mine.” I’m now up there on the row with authors I admire, use as sources, or despise.
I’ve made it another step up the academic ladder, except the ladder goes . . . nowhere, not really, not for me at the moment. I have academic “street creds” while standing on the sidewalk watching things go by. Which is not entirely a bad place to be, given the uncertainty of adjunct life these days.
So I sit here, book in hand and a goofy grin on my face, petting my author’s copy and working on three fiction projects, another non-fiction work, and getting ready to teach next week. For this moment, life is good.
Thank you. Now if they would just ship the retail copies, so I can stop fielding questions about “Why hasn’t my copy arrived yet? I preordered it and it’s supposed to be out!”