Recently plenty of attention has been directed toward the UK Princess and certain unnamed celebrities and their baby bumps. I’m all for babies, having had five of them during a time when the condition was well hidden within clothing resembling a tent. But the trend today is to spotlight baby bumps wrapped in body-hugging duds so the world can watch it being readied to brave what lies ahead—no doubt more than the infant bargained for.
I’d like a beam of candle power directed to a bump of my own—my book bump. I bought a package of napkins once—can’t remember the occasion. I’ve saved the last one forever because of what’s printed on that small square space:
IF ALL THE WORLD’S
I WANT BETTER
I’m about to birth my first young adult book and, unlike a baby who sort of develops by magic on its own while splashing around for nine months inside a warm womb, books take endless planning. The only thing to compare it to is if the mother—Dad, too—had to decide on EVERYTHING. For example: head shape hair eye and skin color dimples or not long fingers for the piano or strong ones for the upright bass able to add and subtract to manage their checkbook or to increase government debt or to write books versus being content to read another’s efforts. No about-to-be parent is required to make decisions like that. But the self-publishing writer must know one font from the other their sizes and attraction appeal that the facts have been well researched what headers footers and book gutters are how many blank pages are allowed can he or she grab a reader in three seconds with the book cover and whether everyone was thanked who earned it—I almost forgot my Mom and Dad, can you imagine that?
Hilary wrote It Takes a Village (to raise a child). It requires most of the villagers and a number of midwives to deliver a successful book. Pregnancies take long enough; book birthing normally takes longer. Not that I haven’t known a few writers who claim an entire novel sprung alive upon page after page with little effort. I believe that’s possible since I truly believe in my heart that everything meant for this blue planet already exists and we simply manifest it. Like I said, my heart believes that but my head gets a trifle hung up on the technicalities. On the other hand, I did write the four-page Epilogue for BIG WAR, Little Wars in one sitting and it didn’t require a single edit. So there’s your proof.
But here’s the big question: IF I do what I am directed to do—write—and IF I stick it through to completion THEN, once memory of the birthing pains are history, will there remain those to OOOH and AAAH over my newborn baby—oops, I mean my newly born book?