Publishing a novel is like being a horrible father. I spent four years from the inception of the book
to scoring the book deal to getting it released today.
So, it's four years old. It's no longer mine.
It's like having a four year old baby. I give it a pack of cigarettes, a fifth of tequila and directions to a party in the Mission District in San Francisco. I also tell it to never come back home because I can't protect it, house it, or feed it.
— You're on your own, kid.
— You don't know how to light a cigarette? Here. Now inhale. Good boy. Hit that tequila. This slice of lime will make it go down a bit easier.
— Stop crying, you'll get use to it.
— Beat it. Scram. Your release date is February 1st. We're done here.
— I will talk about you to the press. I'll always be fond of you, but it's time for you to catapult into the world with nothing but a cover that'll barely keep you warm. People will pick you up with no regard for your vulnerability, judging you with one sentence, or that coat I gave you.
— This is going to hurt me more than it will hurt you.
— You're all grown up now. Finish that second cigarette. Give one to dear old dad over here.
— Don't give me that look. I'm a bad father. But guess what? Oprah just may praise my poor parenting skills and might adopt you. Then I'll buy a condo in Paris.
— Drink up, kid. You're public property now. You're a bad film adaptation waiting to happen. You're going to have a brother who only speaks Spanish and a sister who only speaks French.
— It's February 1st. Get out of my house. Hey, and that's good tequila, don't waste it. I won't recoup the cost until a royalty check comes in about a year.
That's what publishing a book feels like. Protecting a baby, watching him grow up to four years old, and kicking him out into the cold.
And you know what? I'm going to do it again. I’m going to spawn more novels. I can keep giving birth until the day I die. No menopause for me. No shooting blanks for me. Just heartbreak every couple of years as I kick another literary kid out into the world.
They should give me a literary vasectomy, except a literary vasectomy is a full frontal lobotomy. And that can't be reversed.