Congratulations! You just finished your book, and while we always knew you could do it, the odds in Vegas suggested that this was extremely unlikely, and some of us are out a lot of money this morning. But never mind! That’s irrelevant! Lifelong dreams have been accomplished, so does it really matter who gets thrown into the back of whose car and gets their fingers systematically broken?
Ahem. Where were we? THE BOOK. It is done. Go ahead and throw out that copy of The Artist’s Way that you bought and never actually opened. You don’t need it. You are cured from whatever creative malaise that book was attempting to solve and if it strikes again, you can, I don’t know, start drinking absinthe or something. That book is for losers and failures, something that you are not, because you took a bunch of words and spat them out into a Google doc while openly weeping. AND NOW YOU ARE DONE. Life goal accomplished. You crossed the finish line. THIS IS IT. The apex of your life.
But also, what if this doesn’t make you happy?
Ha ha ha ha ha, no, that’s ridiculous! If publishing a book – your lifelong dream since you were a kid – doesn’t make you happy, it means your unhappiness is a nebulous and intractable thing that cannot be solved with accomplishments, and that you are doomed.
So this better fucking make you happy.
Anyway, it’s filed away! It’s gone to print! No more changes can be made now. Nope. Not a single one.
Should you have taken out that line about eating dogs? It’s too late to change it, but like, are people not going to read your book because of that?
No, that’s silly.
They aren’t going to read your book because it’s bad.
Oh, god. It’s so bad, isn’t it? Like, truly bad.
Is it too late to return your advance? You should really check. Google “can I return my book advance to the publisher because I’m a coward who can’t write”. Huh. It looks like there are no results for this kind of thing because you are the first person to be this much of an unhinged Muppet.
Do you realize that this is what people dream about, and you are complaining? As an exercise, you should probably sit with that thought and write down ten reasons why this makes you a bad human being. The first one should be 1) Because I’m an ungrateful poodle.
HA HA HA HA HA, oh my god, I just realized that you changed your ex-boyfriend’s name to an alias, and the name you randomly picked is actually the name of some other guy you went to school with, and now everyone is going to think you got it on with that guy, who was, by all estimates, WAY WORSE THAN YOUR EX. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA LET’S GO LIVE IN THE WOODS.
Take your keyboard out of your mouth.
This post isn’t that funny, by the way. Did you mean for it to be funny? It’s not that funny. The book is funnier than this, right? It’s a feminist treatise about sexism and misogyny and how that defines our relationship with food, but also it needs to a goddamn romp. Especially because assholes love to say how feminists are humorless – so it needs to have people crying with laughter but also make them want to tear down the Patriarchy upon which the culinary world is built. Otherwise you will have failed as both a humor writer and in upholding your beliefs. So, good luck with that.
Oh, also, technically, you’re unemployed now. I mean, you were unemployed before, I guess, but like, you’re really unemployed now. Before, people were like, “How’s the book going?” and you would say “Oh, it’s fine” but inwardly you wanted to scream, “I DON’T KNOW, BOB, HOW IS YOUR FACE GOING?”. Which admittedly doesn’t make much sense. Much like Chapter 7.
Now when people ask “How’s it going” you can say, “The book is done!” and then they ask you what you’re writing next and WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT? Do they go up to people who’ve just had surgery and say “Oh, when are you doing that again?” Do they walk up to people with newborns and shout, “WHEN ARE YOU HAVING ANOTHER ONE?”
Actually, they probably do do that to people with newborns. Also, did you just compare writing a book to having a baby or having surgery? Because that seems problematic. In a big way. Oh, god, did you say things like that in the book? Did you disparage new parents or surgical patients? You should probably go look through the entire manuscript again and find out. It would be good to know if you did. Not because you can change those things, but so you can freak out about it while you are trying to go to sleep.
But also: are you gonna write another one? Because people don’t just, like, write a book or two. They write like a dozen books. You should probably go find your copy of The Artist’s Way that you threw out the window with reckless abandon. And then go write a dozen books.
I bet if you wrote a dozen books, you’d be happy.
P.S. -For realsies, though, I did just finish my second book, which will be out next year. If you want a couple of reminders about when it’s coming out (I promise, I won’t be an excess asshole about it) you can join my Super Cool Email Club in the nifty box below or by clicking that text link.