On January 11 I was preparing for bed. Deciding to check my email one last time, I opened my iPad and saw an email from the editor who’d been reading my manuscript. I tapped. And there it was, The Call.
The Call is what writers call the moment you receive the first call (or when you live overseas, email) from an editor wanting to publish your book. It’s always capitalized, by the way. Because it’s a singular moment you’ll never forget.
I still remember the moment when I got another Call, from an agent who wanted to represent me. I was cooking potato and leek soup. This time, I’d just put night cream on my face and was trying not to smudge the iPad screen. See how the most mundane facts stand out during these life-changing events?
I still keep in touch with my writing buddies back in the States. And this summer, several of them got The Call. I shared their joy vicariously, happy for them, knowing no one more richly deserved success. But I wanted my own Call.
These last three weeks I’ve nurtured my Call, petting it, stroking it behind the ears, slowing letting others admire my pretty little Call. One by one I told my friends, my husband (who was on a plane bound for the US when I got my Call), my family. My mother-in-law told everyone I was “published,” past-tense, which set up some confusion when I finally told my sisters-in-law.
Already, I’m taking my writing much more seriously. Writing tag-lines, blurbs, proposals—those are things real writers do. I’ve often demurred when friends invited me out, for lunch or an all-day outing, knowing I should be writing but hesitant to refer to my nebulous writing “career”. But now when I tell them I can’t do lunch I have a “real” excuse. I have edits, revisions, new chapters to write.
I love it. Love having finally made the cut off, finally proved to my family, and myself, that my writing wasn’t just fanciful nonsense.
When I was a little girl, I remember telling my mother I wanted to be an Author when I grew up. Despite majoring in Business and Pre-Law in college and dabbling in a variety of careers, I always knew in my heart that I was meant to be an Author. Every day that passed without that destiny coming true felt like failure to me.
My novel will be published in about a year—I don’t have a release date yet—by Entangled Publishing. At that point, I will have a Launch Day—another capitalized moment in time—and then I’ll really be an Author.