In the last year, a few of the writers I follow and chat to on Twitter have published their debut books. That means there’s been a lot of book launch talk and I’ve found it all hugely inspiring. Books from authors whose works I already adore seem to be released in a near constant stream but there is something different with the release of a book from someone with whom I’ve actually shared words, even if we are more minor acquaintances than anything else. These moments are not only monumental in the authors’ lives but also in those of all the less progressed writers who can see. The release of a book from someone who is just breaking their way into the business is a declaration that there is always room for new authors, that someday if you stick at it with all that hard work that could be me. Or you. Hopefully both!
It is far too easy to allow myself to look on fellow writers’ successes with jealousy. There is that deep burning part of myself that is longing to be there as well, to see my book on the shelves and being (hopefully) enjoyed by readers. That’s normal and natural but it’s also important to share in other peoples’ successes. Be happy for them and proud of them. Let them inspire me to work on my own novel, give new fire to my commitment to my manuscript.
The glorious Twitter hype around book launches often sends me into daydreams about my own imaginary book birthday, none more so than a release from someone I’ve shared words with. That grounds the experience, brings it far closer to me than it’s ever been before. It makes it a more real and solid thing, as though this thing I aspire too isn’t such an impossibility after all.
And personally, I find that pretty inspiring.