The Things That Will Happen When People Find Out You’re Writing a Book

Most people will not care. This is because they’re human beings with lives of their own that don’t revolve around you (weird). This is fine. This is, actually, vastly preferable to some of the other things that will happen, so be cool with it. Just talk about something else. Talk about anything else.

People will ask you what kind of book it is. You’ll say YA and they’ll stare blankly at you, and then you’ll remember that not everyone is involved in publishing and most normal people don’t care about genre distinctions and you’ll say, “Young adult. For teenagers. Teenage girls, mostly,” and they’ll make a noise of understanding while looking like they don’t understand, not even a little, not even at all.

People will tell you that J.K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter on napkins. Nod politely.

“But it’s not about vampires, right?” they’ll say. Has any book been about vampires for the last five years? You don’t think so.

“I want a signed copy!” they’ll say, and that’s very nice, but your book is ebook only and you don’t even want to try to explain that so you just say sure.

People will ask “What’s it about?” and you’ll freeze. You spent months on this, almost a year, and you suddenly can’t remember even a single plot point. You should practice this, in front of a mirror or something. “It’s funny! But it’s also about anxiety. And homecoming. Oh, and The X-Files, and…” you’ll trail off, and they’ll look at you like, “This inarticulate person wrote an entire book?”

“Maybe you’ll be like J.K. Rowling!” Maybe. Maybe you’ll win the lottery. Maybe the world will end tomorrow. Maybe a lot of things will happen.

Some people will be so impressed, it will shock you. There’s no telling who these people will be, but they’ll make you feel like maybe somebody will actually read your book. This is the nicest and also vaguely disconcerting.

People will say, “You should put that in a book!” You never should. It is never something that should be in a book, whatever it is, trust me.

People will say, “That sounds like a fun hobby!” You will die a thousand deaths right there on the spot. Hobbies don’t make money you’ll say in your head but not out loud. Don’t ever say it out loud. Maybe someday you’ll say it out loud.

“What you need to do is write something like J.K. Rowling.” Something that affects our culture immeasurably, influences an entire generation of people, and makes a million dollars? You hadn’t thought of this before.

3 Responses to “The Things That Will Happen When People Find Out You’re Writing a Book”

  1. Kerry

    LOL! Or you have friends who haven’t seen you in a year and when you finally get to catch up they forget to ask about your book. :/

    So so proud of you!

    • heykerryann

      This list is about people I don’t know very well, not my closest friends, you weirdo! You’re always very supportive! I am MORE than okay with not talking about me every time we hang out, believe me.


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