My first public book signing is tomorrow.
I feel ready for the most part. Really, it’s no big deal: you show up, you put together a nice presentation, and you sell books. Except for the props, the dress code, and the fact that it’s my own book that I’m selling, it’s really no different than any shift I’ve worked at the bookstore. Plus, it’s my own bookstore, so this whole thing will be like learning how to bike with training wheels: I’ll have a few people standing by who could help me out a little bit. Beyond that, this feels more like the first day at a new job: exciting, but it’s still somehow work.
Truth be told, I actually feel a little underprepared only because I haven’t freaked out so far…well, until now, if you count an eleventh hour blog entry as a freak-out.
I’ve spent the last couple of weeks learning and re-learning the fine art of letting go of things. The analytical part of my consciousness, the one that winds me up with overthought and what-ifs, tells me that letting go equals complacency, laziness, and all manner of things that fall down without attention. But what is there to prepare, really? I’ve rehearsed my elevator speech, and most of my interactions will be natural and improvised depending on who it is I’m talking to. I want this to be as authentic as it can be while still being effective.
I really hope at least a couple of people show up who I actually know, outside the store staff, I mean. Even if they say nothing, if they don’t become a safe haven for me to hide behind from interactions with customers, strangers who may buy and read my book, it would be nice to have someone watching from a distance, letting me ride, but also there in case I take a spill. It’s nice to have a comfort zone, even if it’s nearby.
This is part of the traction I wanted to get with my life. Nearly three months back on the full time 9 to 5 circuit has reminded me, sometimes in a very stressful way, that it’s far better to create your own wealth by your own means than work for someone else. Unlike my office job, or even my bookstore job, the only source of income that’s within my complete and absolute power is my writing. That requires hustle. That requires that I do these types of signings and grow into the discomfort. If I can get momentum on this, learn from it, accept whatever results happen, and keep rolling, it’ll be worth it just for the experience, but it’ll also bring about the vision I’ve crafted for my life much faster than I would by not doing it.
….’Kay, now I’m just getting into the overthought about this because I feel I should be. Just gonna fucking bring my game tomorrow and let whatever happens happen .
Things work out so much better when I just let the Universe do its thing. Setting intentions is one thing, but whenever the analytical mind tries to micromanage the process, I always end up on my ass with more than a few bruises, run down from self-imposed stress. If I look back with a somewhat critical eye, the experiences that have benefited me when I most needed them tended to fall into my lap. My last two jobs were the results of headhunter: I didn’t apply to them, they just found me after I set out to find new work. My most recent dating and relationship experiences also just sort of happened as they did, and they were most transformational when I just stopped trying to be anything other than what I was.
Maybe it isn’t the case of always aspiring, always striving, always spinning one’s wheels. This isn’t about fishing poles, but about using well-baited nets and letting the fish come to you. You act when the situation calls for it. The rest of the time, you just live the now.
We’ll see it how it goes, but I’m very happy with “Convergence”, both from the money side to date and the feedback about the story I’ve gotten so far.
And I’m still writing. To paraphrase Malcolm Reynolds, it’s not much, but it’s enough.
Off to bed.