Here’s a question: when you finish a project are you the type that 1) can’t let go, and needs to reread and re-edit until it’s physically taken out of your grasp or 2) never want to look at it again? I fall squarely into the second category. That’s what I love about blogging and journalism—I hit publish and I’m done. If the news develops further, I simply write a second post! However, it turns out that isn’t ideal for book writing, where you need to be ready to return to a manuscript at a moment’s notice.
On the evening of November 2nd, I stopped tweaking my book manuscript and handed it off to the publisher. What an amazing moment of finality, clicking the mouse and feeling the weight lift off my shoulders!
I guess in one way, I met my deadline. I did deliver a manuscript on time and fulfill the terms of my contract. But on the other hand, the book is far from over. My publisher and I are still in the midst of contacting cosplay photographers so we can identify the people in their photos. Since photographers and cosplayers are so busy, that could take several more weeks. Then there will be edits, re-edits, and design proofs, probably until February.
The book is over—and it isn’t. Now I have to do the difficult thing and move on with my life knowing full well that I’ll eventually have to drop everything and pick it up again several times, and make peace with not knowing when those times will occur. The book, whose working title is simply “Cosplay,” is still slated to be published in March 2015.
Over the entire course of my career as a writer, the idea of writing a book has been veiled in mystery. I put authors on pedestals, soaking up the pageantry that surrounds a book release without putting much thought into the process itself. In the end, I’ve learned that writing a book comes with the same difficulties and irritations of any other job.
In any case, this concludes my book writing blogging series. I hope it was able to effectively convey the uncertainty, confusion, occasional terror—and the scant, perfect moments of crystallized relief—that come with writing a book.