Today is the day my book finally comes out. (Though there have been sightings in bookstores already and Amazon started shipping it a few days ago.) I woke today to a text from a friend saying, “Happy birthday to your book!” and that is kind of how it feels like. A cosmic release of energy. A letting go into the world of something that was only yours before.
And all morning I have really been thinking of all the people who have supported and helped me through the process:
–My writer friends, who read my early drafts and gave me so much helpful, constructive criticism. I learned so much about the characters from them, and that knowledge kept me going through all the revisions;
–My agent Lisa Grubka, who has unending energy, enthusiasm, and great ideas. Before and during the submission process, she truly always knew what was best for the manuscript; even now, long after the sale, she is still an absolute key part of the process and a wonderful advocate;
–My team at Simon & Schuster, especially of course, my editor Kerri Kolen, who is Incredible, I tell ya, Incredible with a Capital “I.” She is a force to be reckoned from, and she works mighty magic with my book. I’m also lucky I have on my side the brilliant Tracey Guest and the great Amanda Ferber;
–The folks at Simon & Schuster, who read the manuscript and started the buzz going. I don’t know them, and haven’t met them, but they sure do know me and my book!
–My friends on the blogosphere, who accompanied me in the year and a half journey toward publication; too many to mention, but folks like dkm, Anne Allen, Meghan Ward, Elizabeth Varadan, Judy Croome, Diane Wolfe, Aubrie Flutist, Natalie Murphy, Vicki Rocho, Rachna Chhabria, Holly Ruggiero, Karen Lange, Sarah Skilton (who just sold a book–hooray!), Milo James Fowler, Robert Guthrie, A.L. Sonnichsen (who just celebrated 12 years of marriage–congratulations!), Yvonne Osborne, Theresa Milstein, Medeia Sharif (whose book BEST. RAMADAN. EVER came out last week), Tess, Tricia O’Brien, Hannah Kincade, Sierra Godfrey, Lynn Colt, Pk Rhezo, Aubrey Flutist, Piedmont Writer, Julie Dao, Faith Hough, Amanda Sablan, Yat-Yee, Victoria Dixon, Solvang Sherrie, Dezmond Hollywood Spy, Stina Lindenblatt, Quinn Seeing Dreaming Writing, Molly WriterMamaDreamer Hall, Court Ellyn, Lynn Connecting Stories, Justine Dell, Lola Sharp, Kelly Polark, Jennifer Hiller, and Jonathan Arntson. I’m sure I’m forgetting someone. I really do love you guys, and I really appreciated the smart, kind, supportive comments I would get from you. You gave me advice, you helped me pick my author photo, you held my hand through it all. Thank you!
–The booksellers who have been championing the book. You have been amazing to me and the book and I thank you. Your enthusiasm and support has meant the world to me. And I can’t wait to meet more booksellers as I make my way through the country signing stock and doing readings. I love getting reviews of the book, but the ones from the booksellers are especially wonderful. Thank you!
–The book bloggers who have been writing about the book, especially A Casual Reader. Thank you for championing the book!
–My cadre of Chicago Indian women best friends–Reena, Rita, Harpreet, and Anjali! You have been as excited about the book as I have, and have been the recipient of countless sharing of news. Thank you for being happy for me, always.
–My L.A. friends–Neel, Maitraya, Jeehanger (all also, incidentally, Indian–I just noticed that), and all of whom must come to my reading next week or else.
–My friends who helped me get flyers out to the distant land of the burbs–Eric, Christina
–My friend who literally handsells my book to everyone she knows–Jeanne
–My colleagues at work who agreed to get the word out, especially Sheila, Arlene, Karen, Madhurima, and again Jeanne
–My family, of course
For all of you who lent a helping hand or even just offered a word or two of support: I know it’s cheesy to say this, but I really, honestly, completely feel like ALL of US have a book out today. When my book become an Amazon Best Book of the Month, one of my friends called me, delighted, and said, “I’m so happy! I feel like it happened to me, like it’s my accomplishment!” And I thought, that’s because it is! When you support someone else, a piece of their achievement becomes yours, doesn’t it? This is a great day, and thanks to everyone who helped me on the way!!!! (I’m not done asking you for help, by the way, I *will* need advice on my next author pic.)