I am in front of Sun News, Pagosa Springs, Colorado. I just picked up the preview and looked to see my article, The Artist's Lane
Have you heard someone talk about their boyfriend. They go on and on, and you never meet him. You wonder if there is a boyfriend.
When I ran into the editor of the Sun News, Karl Isberg, I said, “The book is almost there. Just a couple more weeks.” He gave a little teehee, chuckled, rolled his eyes and nodded like “Sure.” Then I wondered, maybe he thinks there isn’t a book.
The Sun, Pagosa Springs, Colorado, I have a weekly column, The Artist's Lane.
My Sweet Al says about the book, “When you get through with this book, it is going to make War and Peace look like a Sunday School Quarterly. You won’t be able to pick it up, they will have to buy it in volumes.”
I’ve told everyone, the book is coming. Now I wonder if anyone believes me. I’ve told everyone that I’m going to sell 2500 books, I’ve even made a website with that title, “How I sold my first 2500 books”, I’ve even documented how I am going to do it. Does any one believe me?
Why is it taking so long? That’s what My Sweet Al is asking. When a writer is going through editing, she is having to change chapters and move words. She goes back to the first chapters to see if she set up the scene and is always trimming the fat. She changes names because there is a better name for that character, She goes back and research out things, like, “How to pick a melon”, or is this really a Jewish tradition, when did it come into their history. All that and more moves the editing along about 6 or 7 pages a day.
Al thinks I’m writing more, but I’m writing less. It started with 110,000 words, it is now down to 79,000 words and will probably be 60,000 words when it is finished. I will have said more in half the words, brought the characters to life, made the scenes more believable, and made me fall in love with each character. If all of this does this to me, the writer, it’s got to do something for the reader.
This time spent has got be the acid test. If it didn’t have the power I know it has, people would just wrap it up, put it on the shelf, and get discouraged. Nothing like that is happening to this book. In fact, Lin, my editor and I marvel how much we are enjoying doing it, and how life giving this whole process is.
I reminded her, she offered. She tells me, she has enjoyed every minute. She is not tired meeting three days a week for the past seven months. I am not tired driving 50 minutes each way to her home. The closer we get, the more this work is proving what we know it is to be. When the Lord is in it, it is not grievous, it is worthy of every minute we have put in it. I believe it has the power to be a best seller. (There I go again – making another prediction.) BUT, I believe in this work, to the point, it doesn’t matter what other’s think.
My poor, Market Coach, Mikey, is also wondering if there is a boyfriend or not. Believe me, this book is better than a boyfriend. It’s going to comfort the soul, break the heart, make the reader dream about it at night. It will tuck her in bed and sing to her soul, it will make her glad to be a women. If it doesn’t, she is all dried up and needs a good dose of prune juice.
That’s part of the acid test.
I'm reading my favorite article, The Artist's Lane, by Betty Slade.
Time has been on our side. In meeting with Karl, the Sun Editor, I asked him if he would endorse it. He said, “Yes, but let me read it first.” That’s big. He’s Jewish – I’m writing about his culture, He’s a writer – He knows how to write, He’s an editor – He knows if it has reader appeal. He will be the final test. I know, because I know Karl, if it isn’t worthy of his endorsement, he won’t endorse it.
This is where all this time has been on my side, I’m confident that he will find it a good read. It’s a woman’s book, so he might not go bonkers, but he will tell me the truth. If it is something I can fix, I’ll do it. If it doesn’t blow off his jockey shorts, then he is not my targeted audience.
So, believe me, when it is finished, you are going to want to read this book, Spirit of the Red Candle, journal of Mary Magdalene.
I’m not selling it, there isn’t a visible book ready to sell. You’ve just got to trust me. I’m sold on it.