Okay so, here's a story about what happens when you don't listen to everything you've been taught since the age of five. Haste makes waste. Now, unfortunately, in my haste, I deleted the revised version of my manuscript and sent the wrong document to my agent. Luckily, I backed up my work because I originally deleted what I thought was "old version" of my novel. All I can say is my Dropbox saved me.
Now that that's off of my plate what's next?
Well, my Afterword or my Foreword is next. I'm ready to start brainstorming and actually putting my ideas on paper. I'm ready to do some self-reflecting and pour onto the pages why I wrote this book. Why does the story of my fictional character Mya Andrews matter to be and in the grand scheme of young adult literature?
This is a weighty question. One that I am afraid to tackle. Not because I think I can't answer it, but because of all of the ways I know I can. That question is very much an open-ended one which can lead me in several directions. I know the academic manner in which I feel I should tackle it. And that will be included because it is important. It will demonstrate what I've been in doing in grad school. Or at the very least, make me sound way smarter than I really am. Yet, it is in the emotional scope that I wish to travel as I navigate the pages and get to the source of my reason for why? Why have I worked so tirelessly for more than two years to bring this story to life?
Why should it exist on the shelves with other books and not simply reside in my portfolio as a student? Should it exist at all?
These are the questions I plan to explore. Toni Morrison's Afterword for The Bluest Eye was so inspiring. And she's so intelligent and her work is and will always be so important to the literary canon I feel like an imposter for even trying to step in that lane. Then I realized that that's the beauty of telling stories. There is enough room for them all and there is no one way to experience America as a female and as a person of color-- of course. But it can be intimidating when you think about what your work will say about you and the people you're trying to represent. How will the world appreciate them?
It used to be my dream to make Oprah's book club of the month selection and to be on the New York Times bestsellers list. Now, I just dream to be published and hold the book in my hand. I don't know why my dream has diminished or, do I just appreciate and realize that there are levels to this and I must celebrate and not rush past the small steps to get to the big ones.
The road is still long ahead of me and I'm certain I've got more revisions to go from here. No matter what I am going to brace myself and prepare for the process while trying to stop and smell the milestone roses along the way.
For now, I just have to remind myself of the following:
And what better way to do it than with my customized bitmoji