It was honestly a bit bittersweet.
This is breaking the whole “Entries are about the stuff that happened while writing the book,” but I thought it was significant enough for the blog and myself to discuss this now.
My ebook was released on the November 21st. I actually received the proof copy of the novel on the release day due to some shipping delays. I didn’t worry too much about it since I already saw the physical copies for the KickStarter backers in the previous week and the two editions essentially shared the same cover design with only slight changes for the spine and the back.
The back was fine.
The spine looked great.
But the front cover that used to the same file for the KickStarter copies were some how dun’ goofed.
In a sense, it was fitting considering how the whole journey had been. It was also somewhat metaphorical of the things I could have done better.
I remembered back to just a week before when I was cutting the tapes on the package for the KickStarter copies. Was I excited? Not really. I was only filled with dread for the release day just a week ahead and yet somewhat looking forward to being able to put this chapter of my life to an end.
Glistening covers of the novels peeked through the crunched up brown packaging papers. My mind emptied out all the thoughts floating around. I gingerly removed one of the books in the tightly packed box.
When I held that book in my hand and I could actually smell that paper… all the thoughts of the days ahead were just… gone. Instead I was absorbed into the memories of all the days before that led up to that exact moment. In my hands was the result of what I started on the hard, dirty floor of a motel room 3 years ago. Even just a few months back, I was wondering if I would be able to see the damn thing.
I flipped through it as every chapter and page turned into a scrap book of memories. Instead of the letters and words, I saw the moments and events that made everything on these pages possible. Each chapter, sometimes even just a single page, told a tale of their own to me.
Late evenings and sacrificed weekends.
Triumphs and failures.
My friends and family.
A life-changing adventure that will meet its humble, if not insignificant, ending in just a week.
There were things I’ve gained that I never would have gained and there were also things I’ve lost that I would have never lost if I didn’t decide to write 3 years ago.
Was I happy with the dividends?
It was a journey that was perhaps more exciting and dramatic than I could have ever planned for or imagined (and boy was it longer than I ever anticipated). And a journey that perhaps didn’t have the proper ending that it deserved waiting for it at the end. (Or perhaps it was the most fitting)
I showed my mother the KickStarter copy. She smiled and clapped in joy. I was told I did a good job and she took photos to share it with her friends. I was more-or-less stunned by her reaction. I didn’t expect it. I’m wondering now how my face looked to her but seeing her smile over my book is a good memory to have.
I gave a copy to my editor who also seemed much happier than I was.
My friends who’ve supported me also extended their congratulations.
One KickStarter backer that I delivered the novel in person to greeted me with a smile and excitement. We chatted for a while of what could be my future ahead and we ended the conversation with him letting me know that he was excited to read it.
If anything, I wish there was a better ending–even if it isn’t the most fitting one– for them.
Don’t get me wrong. There was a small part of me that was definitely a bit bittersweet because I thought I deserved more (like a child) for all I’ve put into this project.
But as I set the book back down, I realized I was mostly bittersweet not because of the ending itself but because of the fact that the journey was ending. There were many things that could have went better and many things I could have done better–maybe I wasn’t satisfied with it ending just yet.
Maybe, I just really enjoyed the ride. I enjoyed working on this dream and believing (sometimes even pretending) that it was possible. That I was tearing away the fantasy from the dream until it turned into reality. During this ride my life went to places that I never thought it could go. Some great, some terrible but all of it were fruitful experiences.
I was bittersweet because even though I wasn’t satisfied yet, I knew given my circumstances I’d have put my pursuit on hold. I want to write more. I still have stories to tell.
But knowing that now for a certain even after all this was, in and of itself, another gift from this journey. It was a grand adventure and I think whatever happens from this point on nothing will change that. I’m glad I decided to write. I’m happy I was able to finish. I’m looking forward to what’s ahead.
…although technically I guess the journey isn’t over yet. Maybe this entry was just more of me venting and I may have had no idea yet what I was talking about… Alrighty then.
Oh, and hey readers. Yes, you there with a disappointed look on your face!
I started this blog to share my experiences. Part of it was because I really wanted to have a record this experience, part of it was because I thought it’d help me understand this experience, and part of it was because this was something that I was told I should do during this experience.
The point I’m trying to get at is that I’m not going to deny that I started this blog mostly for myself. Even as much as I hope this blog is at the very least entertaining and maybe at its rare moments informative–if not helpful–I started this for me.
But… that sort of changed very quickly once I got started.
I always took this blog very seriously and truly appreciated all the readers who read any of my entries. Knowing that some of you decided to give me part of your time to read what I’ve wrote is a surreal feeling.
Seeing any views and likes on my blog have been super encouraging and delightful. Some of the repeat readers like Damyanti (http://en.gravatar.com/damyantig. Check out her sites if you’re interested in writing! She has some cool stuff) really pushed me to worker harder and harder on this blog.
So although I may have started this blog mostly for myself… I feel I’d be being dishonest to say it’s only about myself now.
I’m not very good at this social media stuff (my Twitter account is a testament to that) and I’m not even sure how to really show my appreciation other than saying,
I mean that.
A. S. Aramiru
P. S. Here’s the new cover design I made that I was talking about earlier. I think I’m getting better at this and interior formatting than writing. The sample has also been [updated] and it looks very pretty:
Here’s the previous cover design for comparison:
P. S. 2 During this weekend I’ll post another Interlude with more character bios! See y’all then