I’ve been thinking about the new book, and that got me thinking about my first book. It’s been several years, but I still remember the feeling when my editor called and told me she had a few advance copies and her desk, and asked where should she send one. I screamed at the phone “I’ll be right there!” (At the time, I was temping for a company two blocks from her office.) I ran over, grabbed my book copy (and then had a wonderful evening ride on the Staten Island ferry to meet the family for one of the holidays).
Anyway, since then I’ve had a copy of The Presidential Book of Lists in my computer bag and one in my briefcase, so every time I’ve had a bag with me, I’ve had a copy of the book. I can’t remember the last time I pulled it out to show someone, but it’s always with me as a reminder that I did it: convinced a publisher to pay me money to publish my book.
Well, now my first copy of Ranking the First Ladies has shown up, and since I went away for the weekend (to Massachusetts to attend a wedding tomorrow), I took RtFL with me. But now I’m wondering if I should retire TPBoL from the bags. That somehow feels wrong, and yet carrying both books starts to get a little silly (especially since I’m expecting Ranking the Vice Presidents to show up in another month or so, and then it would be three). I know my novelist friends can’t possibly do that; so many of them have a dozen or three score books to their names already. But still, for all that I’ve been a professional writer for a long time, I’m still enough of a newbie to be very excited, and to want to have them with me.