Friday, July 10, 2009

A Book is Born

How is a book born?

Some writers say there are a lot of similarities between birthing a book and birthing a child. The idea is conceived. There is the gestation period where the idea develops into something recognizable. Then there's the incredibly difficult labor of getting the book out of us and onto paper. We dress it up, prepare it to meet the world, and finally comes the day when we must send it out into the world to make it on its own. Will it succeed or fail? Sink or swim? We must send it out and let it go. But we are always there, nurturing it along, mothering it, hoping others will think it is as beautiful as we do.

I don't know the first thing about conceiving, birthing, or mothering a child--I've never been pregnant. But I can tell you that this metaphor is more than appropriate for the book Deliver Me, because this book is all about unplanned pregnancy.

Unlike human babies, the gestation period and labor to birth a book has no set time frame. Some books come about very quickly, fast-tracked into the world.

Others take years. That is the story of this book.

I first conceived of this book more than nine years ago. Notes in my files date back to July 6, 2000.

For a time, I gave up on it, only to have it reborn a few years later. Since then I have been working on it diligently.

It has been a long journey. Interesting. Discouraging. Full of hope followed by rejection, hard work followed by no pay-off. (Yet.) Perseverance. Disappointment. Determination. Doubts. Questions. Dilemmas. And learning.

My story as the author of this book and this book's story are not so different from a million other anonymous authors and would-be books.

Now, suddenly, I find I am in labor. This book is coming. It appears it will become a reality. There doesn't appear to be anything on the horizon to stop it now! But still, I am anxious. Until I hold it in my arms...

How is a a book born?

I'm sharing the story of this book because I think many people might find my journey interesting, informative, and enlightening.
  • Writers, especially, will be interested in how this book has developed and all the ups and downs. If you've followed my writing or e-zine, you know I help and mentor writers, letting others learn from what I experience.
  • I especially hope writers considering self- or independent publishing will read this story because there are a lot of lessons here to learn about what to do and, perhaps more importantly, what not to do.
  • Those who have contributed stories for this book--writers and others--will like to know what has been happening with it through the years...and why it has taken so long to become a reality.
  • Those who have heard about this project over the years and have encouraged me to continue with it also might like to know the long story of this book.
  • Those who are passionate about helping people in unplanned pregnancies--who often work in Pregnancy Resource Centers or Crisis Pregnancy Centers--will also find the development of the book interesting in anticipation of its arrival. You will nod your head in agreement and quiet understanding as you read about the encounters I've had with people--both positive and negative encounters.
  • Finally, women, men, and families caught up in an unplanned pregnancy, or who had an unplanned pregnancy in their pasts, may also find value in this book's story--because that's what it is all about. Deliver Me tells the true stories of real people who have been where you are or have been--what they thought, what they did, what they regret, what they're happy about...the whole deal.

So through this blog, I will share the history of this book and its current development. Its challenges. The people I've encountered. The encouraging feedback. The discouraging incidents. The surprises. The disappointments. The obstacles that threatened to cause it to be still-born, or not born at all. I will tell this book's story because I believe it will have value for many readers and writers.

As we go, I will let you know what's happening now, because things are now happening fast!

I hope you enjoy the journey.


Marlene Depler said...

Blessings! May delivery be speedy! And may many be encouraged by your work. And breathe! Breathing is important when "birthing."

Marjorie Vawter said...

Good analogy, Dianne. I look forward to following this book's progress.