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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Really, I just want to register, Part 2

Remember how I registered for a Social Change & Leadership class for the Summer? Yeah, strike that. When I got the syllabus for the class I found out I'd need to log 60 hours of volunteer time in the two months of class (that averages about 9 or 10 hours a week, after taking into account the two weeks I'll be gone), and that was on top of the reading and postings I'd have to do. I felt sort of guilty about even thinking of dropping the class; after all, I would be getting out in the community and doing good. But I had to think realistically. It's going to be a difficult enough summer as it is, taking so many classes, and to even begin to think about having to be gone that much (and find a place for my kids during that time) made me sick to my stomach. Plus I feel pretty strongly that I need to be able to spend time with my kids this summer--going to the zoo, the library, friends' houses, etc. I knew I couldn't swing that if I were to continue to take that class. And, as an added bonus, after I had pretty much decided I'd just have to take the loss of the $10 I spent on books for that class, I got an email from the half.com seller I'd bought the books from telling me there'd been some sort of error and they didn't really have the books I'd ordered, did I want a refund?

So instead of Social Change & Leadership, I'm taking a Project Applied Study Term. Basically what that means is I'll be working on my book. I've decided to add a bad guy and so I've got to plan him (and any possible sidekicks), write his story, integrate it in with the existing story, and probably do some editing along the way. (Who, me? Edit?) I have to clock 150 hours over the two months, but I can clock them any time--at home, in the car, reading, writing, researching, planning, editing, talking with my Field Supervisor (a UIS English professor), 3:30 in the morning or 4:00 in the afternoon. I plan on re-reading my story in preparation for adding the bad guy, taking notes on when and how I want to fit him in, and guess what? That counts as hours! I can totally get used to this. I may even read The Princess Bride as further research. (Seriously! I've wanted to re-read it as inspiration for my story, and now my just be the time to do that. And no one's complaining that it would count as hours toward my project!) So, basically, for the next two months I'll have a NaNoWriMo part two. Or, wait...I think we're up to NaNoWriMo part three. In any case, lots of writing, not much time. I'm not sure yet if I'm going to give myself a word goal or not. I know I can't/don't want to write a full 50,000 words just on the bad guy. So I think my goal is just to write his full story and successfully integrate it in with the existing story. I have to figure out my exact goal and write a proposal in the next few days. Yeah, basically my "break" (which hasn't been as much of a break as I'd hoped, but was still much better than full-blown school) is over. I won't even talk about the project for my American Souths class I'm already working on (at the suggestion of my professor).

And, finally, remember how I said I planned to re-read my story in prep for my writing? Well instead of sitting in front of the computer screen, I will get to curl up in a chair and read...


...my book.

Yup, that's right, folks. My book. It just rolls off the tongue, doesn't it? Aaron still hasn't read my story because he doesn't like reading umpteen pages on the computer screen--and really, who does?--so we decided to print it and bind it so he could read it. We started looking at Kinko's, but then thought, why not go all out? I was able, through Lulu.com, to self-publish my book and buy a copy for less than $9.00. Now, I realize, probably more than anybody, that my story still needs a lot of work, even outside of the whole adding-another-whole-storyline thing. But I can't tell you the rush I've gotten today flipping through my book. My book! My actual, printed-on-pages...


...bound-with-a-front-and-back-cover-and-spine...


...bearing-my-name, fits-on-the-bookshelf-right-next-to-The-Princess-Bride (sorry, no picture--my batteries died and I have NO other AA batteries in the house), honest-to-God book. I knew it would be cool, but words can't describe how cool it is. And I think this was just what I needed to get my writing mojo back (I was feeling a bit overwhelmed a few days ago).


*Sigh* Isn't it lovely? Maybe one day, when the completed version is for sale in bookstores around the country, this true first edition will be worth lots of money.

Or, you know, maybe my husband and I and my mom will have a copy. Either way, it's mine. My book.

9 comments:

Brooke said...

wow! that's so cool! i can't wait to see it :)

Anonymous said...

It IS lovely! I can't wait to get my own signed first edition!!!!!!
Maybe I should get TWO signed first editions, and sell one later on so I can retire.

xxxooomomoooxxx

hmmm, that says mom mooo.

adammoore said...

Well done Amelia K! Looks great!

hoesayfina said...

Amy,
I love your book and I mean it! I love the look and the content, even in it's "unfinished" format!
By the way the unveiling of the book was worthy of it's own post! But, I'll take it here.

I'm looking forward to NaNoWriMo III.
-maria

Amanda said...

It's beautiful, Amy. Congratulations on being a PUBLISHED author!

Jennie Lynne said...

Now, I can tell everybody that "MY sister has a published book. I bet your sister can't beat that!" Yes, you are awesome and I bet it's so extremely exciting to have a real live BOOK that YOU wrote on your bookshelf! How fun! :-)

andrea_jennine said...

That's awesome, Amy!

sandycan said...

Congratulations Amy! I hope you have a wonderful summer and that you will enjoy all of your projects busy as you will be.

Anonymous said...

Great idea to bind your book. Now THAT'S inspiration!

Karin