Simon Wood

Posts Tagged: mal de mer

In my writerly life, I get a queasy feeling from time to time.  Different things can trigger it—a book signing, an autograph, a compliment, an advert, etc.  Usually, something nice anyway.  This time it was the cover art for the German version of PAYING THE PIPER.  A woozy feeling washed over me.  It’s a lovely cover but there was one thing wrong with it.  It had my name on it.
Oh, I wrote the book and there’s no mistake about that but it does feel weird to see my name on a book cover.  It somehow seems fraudulent.  We are talking about me being a writer.  This was never the plan.  I read books.  Someone like me doesn’t write them!
Maybe it’s the dyslexia talking.  It’s made me self conscious and given me a sense of unworthiness.  What could be more ludicrous than a dyslexic author? 
Yes, I know some of you will berate me for saying that but it’s the way I feel.
Naturally, being the paradoxical person that I am, I am also immensely proud of my books and stories.  I hope that I’ll keep writing for the rest of my life.  It’s what I want to do with my life.  See!  Paradoxical.  I never said this would make any sense.
I have a bookcase in my office filled with just my books and magazines featuring articles and stories I’ve written.  I look at it all and think, wow, I’m responsible for all that.  I also look at it and think, wow, I’m responsible for all that.  I think there’s been a terrible mistake.  Is there someone I can speak to about this? 
I suppose I’m a still a fanboy when it comes to books and I get excited by books and authors I admire, but when it comes to my books, I don’t believe I’m in their league.  It’s no different when I’ve seen my books in the bookstore. I see them on the shelf or display and I smile, but it’s quickly followed by a blush of embarrassment.
I suppose I’m too close to my work. I can’t view it the same rarefied air as I can with other people’s books. More than likely, most authors feel that way. I guess it’s because a book is like a house. I built it from the dirt up and while the rest of the world sees a house, I see all the difficulties I went through in its construction.
Objectivity is a bitch that way.
I’m not sure I’m making much sense with this admission. Mainly because I can’t quite put a finger the emotion, probably because I’m experiencing two of them at once—glee and embarrassment which are held in check by stupity. I blame being English. Boasting is an outfit that never quite fits. I don’t think my people have the shoulders for it.
I not sure there’s a cure for this aliment.  Dramamine isn’t going to cut it.  I know I’ve tried.  Time heals all wounds so it might be the cure I need—but for that I will have to keep on writing.  J

Categories: shelf life

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