How you know you’re a seasoned author

I was thinking about this as I got ready for my panel last night at Changing Hands. My how things have changed since my first book event!

First book event an author does:

You have dreamed about this day for years. You spend two weeks shopping for the perfect dress. You count down the days. You have your hair done by a beautician. You go out with your friends beforehand to celebrate. Your husband is there to take pictures.

After a few years:

You buy a new shirt for the book event. Hey, it’s time you went shopping for yourself and this gives you a good excuse. You mark the event on your calendar with pride but don’t obsess about it. You make sure you color your hair before the event so you have no gray roots showing. You barely remember to take your camera so someone can snap your picture with the other authors there.

After a few more years:

You mark the date on your calendar to make sure you don’t forget. (How embarrassing would that be?) You figure what you have in your closet is fine to wear and iron something nice looking the day before. Your hair? Well, you probably can squeak by another day without anyone noticing the gray. Only a little is peeking out. When you get to the event you realize you forgot your camera and ask one of the other authors to forward a picture to you.

After 12 years:

You write a memo to yourself on your hand so you won’t forget. (Yes, it’s on the calendar but that’s no guarantee you’ll remember to go when it’s time.) You wonder if it’s possible to color your gray roots with an eyebrow pencil. You find yourself an hour before the event rifling through your closet looking for something clean. Forget the camera, if you’re lucky you will remember to zip your fly. (Because how embarrassing would that be to have you’re fly down again?)

And by the way, my fly was zipped last night, but while I was sitting on the panel I realized that I had forgotten to change my socks form when I was sloughing around the house earlier in sweats and they didn’t match my dressy shirt.

Oh well, authors are supposed to be eccentric right? And hey, Michael, if you’re reading this, forward me that picture you took of the authors so I can use it on my blog!



How you know you’re a seasoned author — 16 Comments

  1. HAAAAAAA! Man have you pegged it! This is exactly how it goes. The last time I put on my black ankle boots with my bvlack dress pants and actually thought about switching out of my fluffy white socks but figured I’d be standing the whole time so who cared? Then they placed me in a chair facing the audience and there were my flashy white socks. Yeah. No wonder I write books about misfits.

  2. Oh my goodness. I’ve just spent the last five minutes laughing at you both, Janette and Julie. I can’t relate to the whole book event, however. Perhaps someday.

    I have scary news for you Janette, I’m stalking you once again. I signed up for your class at the BYU writing workshop. You may want to cancel while you still have time! I’m looking forward to it.

  3. I’m way too narcissitic (sp?) to get caught with socks that don’t work with my outfit. I’m already planning what to wear to Storymakers in April, that’s how bad I am. But I promise to think it’s funny if you’re there and you have two different color shoes on, which might have happened once to me when I was student teaching and I was super tired when I got dressed really early in the morning. In the dark.

  4. Despite the socks, hope all went well LAST NIGHT. I say that because I read your blog this morning–the one before this that announced the teen panel TONIGHT. Well, darn it, I was all excited about it and went to the bookstore TONIGHT only to realize that when you’re reading announcements found in blogs, it’s best to read the actual date when said blog was written, thus saving gas an unnecessary trips to bookstores. (Okay, there are no unnecessary trips to bookstores, but you get my gist). Lesson learned! I’ll look forward to next time!!! 🙂

  5. Hee hee! Thanks for making us all laugh, Janette. I’m still at the dreaming-about-my-first-book-event stage (I just got an offer of representation from a very smart agent!), but since I’m hugely pregnant, I somehow can’t get past dreaming (literally) of shirts that don’t cover my tummy. If wearing athletic socks with dress pants is a no-no, what do you think of me baring my outie? Yikes.

  6. Julie–this is why we are soulmates.

    Shari–yay that you’re in my class!!

    Melanie–just wait a few years . . .

    Windsong–you’re welcome!

    Valerie–I’M SO SORRY!!! I should have put the date on that! I hope at least you got to see Heather Madder. She was there tonight doing a class.

    Kim–Congrats! That is good news! Hopefully soon you’ll have two babies!

  7. I just wanted to say that I’ve recently started reading your books and I’m really enjoying them. They’re just the right blend of romance and comedy. I can’t wait to read Just One Wish, it sounds really good. I hope that you write more Pullman High books, because I really like the characters (I’d like to see Rick get together with Rachel. That would be a lot of fun to read.)
    Thanks for the hours of entertainment.

  8. Janette, you always give me the giggles. Covering your roots with eyebrow pencil. LOL.
    I dream of the day of shrugging at the thought of another writing event. I can’t imagine not freaking out about what to wear. I’m still freaking out about my verbs.

    Once I taught a primary class without a bra. I was pregnant, so I wasn’t thinking clearly. The sad part was that no one noticed.

    Shari- you will love Janette’s class. I signed up for the fantasy workshop but knowing both of you are going to be in the same group without me is making me weepy.

  9. Wow, you’ve been published for 12 years? Okay, that puts everything in perspective and I don’t feel compelled to feel envious of you anymore LOL

    LOL to Melanie, planning what to wear to Storymakers. I am the same way.

  10. o im still asking for it bc it sounds so good but i try 2 show of the book that i have the baseball 1 and tell ever1 that ur books r good bc i want ur books 2 become popular 2 bc i think that they should bc i love them. can u make like 4 books that go together like she did or ur people wont let u? bc i think that would be kool. the schools libery and the public libery in our town doesnt have any of ur books and i have been asking them 2 get some THEY WONT GRRRR. well i guess i will keep trying.
    Well i hope ur having a good day love kayla
    p.s. i just remembered the liberian wants 2 read my book but i dont loan my books out but u should trust a teacher or a liberian.

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