There are many things that I would like to do, but walking into a bookstore and seeing one of my books sitting on a "staff pick" wall was definitely at the top of my bucket list.
I stood there in shock. My hand shook when I pulled out my phone, hoping I wouldn't draw too much attention to myself as I snapped a couple of pictures. I wanted to capture the moment. I couldn't believe it. I was grateful. It was a very humbling experience. I wandered over to the Young Adult section with a grin on my face. Then two girls joined me, we chatted about our love for books. I was eyeing a box set of Cassandra Clare's Immortal Instruments series. They encouraged me to buy it. I smiled. Their enthusiasm for books was comforting.
I mentioned that I write. Their eyes lit up. I smiled and held my hand out, pointing at the staff pick wall. I proudly mentioned that my book, the one I had slaved over, was sitting there. They both wanted to see it, they followed close behind, enthusiastically questioning me about the story. I mentioned vampires and witches and that rainy little town at the edge of the ocean...
One of the girls snatched it up, immediately cooing over how the book feels. I was picky when I created it. I'm a texture person. I wanted that matte finish, I got it. I could tell that she loved it. Then she started to compliment the cover. She opened the first page, her eyes widened. Watching her inspect something I so carefully pieced together was such a satisfying experience. I can't really put it all into words, but that moment was exactly why I write. It was watching her carefully pull that book against her chest after she ran her hand across the cover one last time. Her happiness filled me with joy. I know exactly how she felt because I love books, too. I have a library in my home, filled with books that made me feel the same way. She ended up buying a copy of my book. I signed it, hoping she didn't notice the tremor in my hand.
What a wonderful experience.
Writing is a lonely, somewhat treacherous, journey, but it's moments like this that make it easier. I often ask myself if it's worth it. If the sacrificed hours with my family, the long nights, the tears...all of it can or ever will be justified.
Today I got my answer.
I know that I have a long way to go, but this was such a special moment that I had to immortalize it here on my blog.
Thank you again for supporting me. You know that I appreciate it. I always have. I always will.