At long last, the fateful day arrives! My Name Is Tom Dorin is available for sale in paperback and Kindle on Amazon. Wow, it feels fantastic and a touch odd to be able to say that, the day has been so long in coming. It was an unexpected sort of thrill, too, to type the title into Amazon’s search bar and find my novel.
Even more awesome was to do that in Google and find that it’s the only result that comes up. Out of the multiple millions of search items, the chances of a piece of your own creativity being the one single returned result? They’re… well, the word astronomical is probably an exaggeration, but I bet it comes close. I’ll savor it while it lasts.
Almost as strong as the sense of elation and triumph is the sensation of a heaviness dropping away, the bone-deep relaxation that comes when a long drawn-out, emotionally arduous task is at last completed.
I’m glad I had a couple of days to savor that, because I’m now at that nervous stage where the first half-dozen copies have sold, but it’s too early for the first reviews to come in. It’s not as pleasurable a place to be, because it’s akin to a sense of stage fright that lasts for days instead of minutes. My beta-readers were all generous with their praise, but who knows how others will see it? The thought of getting a bad review this early in the game– well, it shortens my breath and constricts my chest. I know harsh words will come eventually, even God can’t write a book that gets unanimous approval, but I do hope and pray the inevitable happens later rather than earlier!
At least, regardless of what happens from this point forward, I’ve met my main and most important goal. The only outcome that was entirely in my hands: My Name Is Tom Dorin is finished. It’s in tangible form. It is the best story, the best piece of writing, that I’m capable of creating at this point of my life. That is the only part of this process that has been entirely under my command, and it’s what I’ve planted my expectations of the meaning of success upon.
Now, whether it goes down into the void without creating a ripple, or whether it becomes the mythical Great American Novel, is largely beyond my control. Oh, I’ll market it as best I can, and spread the word as best I can– but anything from this point on is a bonus, unexpected gift as far as I’m concerned.
I am, finally and truly, not only a professional writer but a published novelist. And that feels like an enormous personal achievement to me!