Saturday, August 23, 2008

Preparing for the Pre-release Party

I've been reading my essay, "Flying with a Ghost", over and over again trying to get it down to eight minutes. My voice is starting to get weak, and my cat thinks I'm crazy. I'm practicing making eye contact with my audience, which right now consists of the television, a couple of plants and said cat. I've placed pauses in all the right places for laughter, emphasis, or to take deep breaths to calm my nerves. I've created voices for the "characters" that speak throughout the essay. I've done all I can to make sure I'm ready for the big party tomorrow.

At 3PM I'll be joining a large group of fellow writers and their family and friends for the New Lines from the Old Line State pre-release party. Eight of us will be reading. We'll mingle, sign each other's advance copies and enjoy the excitement of seeing our work in print, bound together in a paperback book that smells like ink and glue. I may not be getting paid for this essay, but I have to admit that getting my work published in an actual book, getting the opportunity to promote the book and read my work at local events, is payment enough. What better way to get my name and face out there? What better way to learn how to read an essay without shaking like a leaf? I'm hoping that this publication is just one more step toward a bound collection all of my very own.

I have this dream that the book will magically find its way into the hands of an amazing agent who is looking for someone new to represent. She flips casually through the book and comes to the last piece and for whatever reason the title catches her eye. Since she has nothing to do for the next ten minutes, she begins to read. Fifteen minutes later, she has checked out my website and sent me an email asking to see more of my work. A week after that, we sit in a coffee shop downtown and she offers to represent me. Within months, I have a book deal from Simon & Schuster and am rabidly writing my collection of essays.

For now, I'm in really good company with a great group of poets, non-fiction and fiction writers from the Old Line State. If you'd like to check any of them out (or if you're an agent looking for some new clients) you can pre-order the anthology at Amazon or Target. We'll also be reading at the Baltimore Book Festival for the official book release on Sunday, September 28th from 5:15 - 7PM. If you're in the area, come on out and show us some love!

5 comments:

Kimberly said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm sure you'll do GREAT at the reading. I'm keeping my fingers, toes, eyes, legs, arms... everything crossed for you that you'll get an agent. I'm expecting to see your name IN PRINT on lots and lots of books in the years to come.

Betsy said...

good luck! You'll so great!

MizFit said...

Id say not a DREAM (agent) but youre working to make it a reality.

now? IMO it's all about the visualization as well.

Miz.

Ami said...

Thanks for all the support ladies! It went well and the book looks great. So much great writing! And hearing people read their words with such passion is always great.

Reluctant Housewife said...

Congratulations! That is so cool.

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