Upon Reading Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott: Publication–and Other Reasons to Write – Publication

I’m almost reaching the last part of the book. I’m getting impatient now for I would like to move on to my next reading (which I still haven’t decided what it would be), yet at the same time, I really don’t wanna rush everything. I still wanna enjoy the book.

But still, I’m reading as fast as I could while trying to slow down as well.

Before I finally reached The Last Class, there’s Publication. One thing that I’d like to read the most. Isn’t this one of the holy grails for most writers?

Apparently not.

“I tell you, if what you have in mind is fame and fortune, publication is going to drive you crazy.” ~p. 214

Right. I imagined.

I only got published twice so far, and that was long time ago as well, and in a Christian magazine as well (not to discriminate Christian community of course, but this should reveal that I have a very limited number of readers, not to mention that not all Christians are going to read my writings–I doubt that), yet I’ve boasted all about it, perhaps more than Margaret Mitchell ever did with her Gone With the Wind.

At some points, I know that publication is not at all the end of the journey. Well, except for Margaret Mitchell, perhaps. At the same time, I still want publication so bad. Really bad that I kept trying to send my crappy writings to any newspaper and magazines available.

Here I am! Please, please, publish my writing even if it’s nothing but rubbish!

But of course, unless I’m Andrea Hirata, or Ahmad Tohari, or Ayu Utami, or Pramoedya Ananta Toer, there’s no way to make sure that even if I ever finally published something, it would be such a sensation.

Reality sucks, so suck it up.

There are bigger chances out there that no one would even notice my (unpublished) book. There are plenty chances as well that no one would even buy my book.

Yet here I am, always dreaming and picturing myself, with my published book. That people would read it and praised it. That people would talk about it over and over.

Then I would read other writers’ books (the more accomplished ones, of course) then I would feel like crap. I mean, who the hell am I? What the hell makes me ever think that my book is going to be as good as these people’s books? They’re sensational, fantastic, and genius. Me? I’m just nobody.

Still, publication is something that I’m after.

Oh, holy grail, indeed.

“…whenever the world throws rose petals at you, which thrill and seduce the ego, beware. The cosmic banana peel is suddenly goin to appear underfoot to make sure you don’t take it all too seriously, that you don’t fill up on junk food.” ~p. 218

Not to mention my ego is already huge.

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Laksmi

An MA student at Waseda University, Shinjuku-ku, Tōkyo, Japan. An avid reader. A language geek as well. And a book hoarder.

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