You know what’s interesting? Probably not or you wouldn’t be stuck reading my blog to find out. I wonder if insulting my readers is the brightest idea. Hmmm.
OK, I started off with a digression so now I can focus. In the pursuit of publishing my book I have connected with incredibly helpful perfect strangers. I can’t even tell you how many of them go out of their way to help. I’ve had the opportunity to speak at length with a number of published authors, and what’s interesting is how different we all are from each other, and yet how eager they are to help.
When I tell people that my book is a humorous take on breast cancer, there are three typical answers. One is not really an answer; just silence. Awkward. The other is “what’s so funny about cancer?” Really awkward, and even when I explain I don’t think cancer is funny in general, that my book is about my personal experience using humor as a coping mechanism, they’re just not on board. They’ve all given me great advice, regardless.
Thank goodness there is a third reaction: laughter. So I know there are people out there who totally understand what I’m trying to do, and that keeps me going. I had the good fortune recently to connect with Greta Nettleton, http://gretanettleton.com/ , the talented author who wrote the book The Quack’s Daughter. The book is a true story about the private life of a Victorian college girl, Cora Keck, who just happens to be the author’s great grandmother. The book is beautifully written—and by the way would make a great Mother’s Day gift because it traces a matriarchy. The thing I most enjoy about the book though is how similar Cora’s adventures at Vassar 130 years ago are to those of modern college students. The truth is Cora probably would have been my best friend if we went to college together. She wasn’t exactly a rule-follower, if you know what I mean.
Greta was gracious enough to spend quite a bit of time talking to me about the process of getting a book published, and gave me lots of great advice. But more importantly, she totally gets what I’m trying to do. When I described my book she had no problem laughing along with me at my breast cancer adventure. We just clicked. She restored my faith that there are people out there who are willing to join me in laughing at my own hapless tales.
I get that there are people out there who think I am Morticia Addams, as if that was a bad thing. Morticia was hilarious, right? Because if you can’t laugh at death, what can you laugh at? A classic clip illustrating my point…