On Thursday 11th June a parcel arrived for me. (Huge thanks to my neighbour across the street for taking it in for me).
Instantly I knew what it was.
Secreted in cardboard packaging, I was holding something I’d only ever dreamed of holding in my hands.
Trembling, I carried it into the kitchen and sat it on the table, not trusting myself to look at it never mind open it!
Once I’d turned on the over for dinner and put away my bits and pieces of shopping, I carried my package upstairs to the bedroom and laid it down gently in the middle of the bed.
I stood staring at it, still not believing that it was real.
I changed out of my work clothes then sat on the bed beside it, running my hand over the cardboard. Yes, I even took its photograph.
This was a never to be repeated moment in my life.
My heart was pounding. My hands were shaking. My throat felt dry.
Slowly I tore off the strip across the back of the package and caught my first glimpse of the contents.
A lump now filled my throat and unshed tears were stinging at my eyes.
It was really real now.
Lovingly I slid the contents out of the cardboard sleeve.
I was holding it in my hands!
A huge smile of pride spread across my face as I tenderly caressed it.
What was I holding in my shaking hands?
The first ever paperback proof copy of my Book Baby – Stronger Within.
Since its release on Kindle, there have been many emotional Book Baby moments that I’ll treasure forever- seeing it on sale on Amazon’s website for the first time; selling my first copy in the UK; selling my first copy in the USA and in other countries around the world; reading the first 5* reviews. It’s been an emotional creative roller coaster over the last few weeks.
Nothing however prepared me for the overwhelming emotion of actually holding it in my arms as a real “live” Book Baby!
The last piece of the dream was becoming a reality.
Book Baby sure has come a long way from the four tattered handwritten A4 notebooks that it began life as.
I know I’m biased but it’s beautiful. (Thank you so much to my Photoshop fairy godmother)
So after eleven days, has the feeling worn off?
I’ve painstakingly re-read it from cover to cover, taking extra care not to break its spine, slotting in post-its at pages where the layout requires to be tweaked. I corrected one glaring spelling error. I corrected one “writing” error (I got left and right muddled up). I made one minor tweak to the wording of one section following a reviewer’s criticism of my non-USA language.
Even when it was brimming with post its, it still looked amazing to me.
Corrections made, I submitted a second draft and ordered another proof copy.
I arrived home this evening expecting it to be waiting for me. No sign of it. A wave of disappointment washed over me. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow.
However as I sat on my front doorstep in the early evening sun, my neighbour handed me a cardboard package. (Huge thanks to next door!)
My heart began to pound and a smile began to grow.
I carried it indoors and laid it on the kitchen table then returned to the doorstep to finish off this post.
I guess I’d better go and open my parcel!
***The paperback edition of Stronger Within is available on Amazon now. ***