Writing a Book is Insanely Hard (& The 11 Questions People Always Ask Me)
I’ve probably already told you this before. I KNOW I’ve already said this before (a million times in my head, every single day). But, just for good measure, let me repeat:
Writing a book is INSANELY HARD.
Like, when I started this whole venture, I thought, I’m going to write a book, la dee da dee da. And I pictured myself all Carrie Bradshaw like, wearing a tutu with a ciggy dangling from my lip as my freshly manicured fingers nonchalantly pecked away at my keyboard while I wondered things.
What was I thinking? Writers can’t afford manicures.
And also, writing a book is agonizing. Except in the most beautiful, completely dysfunctional, and somehow enjoyable way. Call me a masochist, but there’s something so f*&king hard about writing a book that feels so f%$king good.
(Pardon my special characters.)
But sometimes, even more difficult than sitting down to write a book, is answering the questions that people have about my book. Not because I don’t know the answers, but more so because I’m a little shy and when you ask me about my book it hits a real sweet spot in my heart and I go all red and blushy and I’m not as articulate as I know I can be... in writing.
So, without further adieu,
The 11 Questions People Always Ask Me About Writing a Book (& My Answers):
1. OMG, You’re writing a book! What’s it called?
9 times out of 10, when someone finds out that I’m writing a book, their first question is always about the title.
For now, under my control, it’s called littlefoolbook.
2. Its got a nice ring to it, but I don’t get it?
The fictional Daisy Buchanan from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s, “The Great Gatsby” once said that the best thing a girl can be in this world is a “beautiful little fool”.
Well, I have been that little fool and these are my stories. Hence: littlefoolbook.
3. What’s it about?
In my experience, little fools grow up to be strong, brave (though sometimes scarred), independent women.* This is a book about those experiences.
Littlefoolbook is a collection of stories, essays, lists, letters, and learnings, exploring themes of beauty, vanity, and self-worth with humor and honesty.
This is a book about a girl with “nowhere to grow but up”. A girl who learns to love herself despite beauty magazines; despite popular culture and a parade of bad boys, and men behind cameras, and boys who turned out not to be boys at all; despite a self-diagnosed case of body dysmorphia and a flirtatious addiction to catcalls.
This is a book about mothers and daughters, about love and sex and hair in unwanted places. This is a book about beginnings and endings, about creating new beginnings and rewriting your own ending.
It’s a self-proclaimed “Bad Feminist’s” (that's me! -- shoutout to Roxane Gay for coining the term) manifesto, where no subject matter is off limits: eating disorders, diet pills, internet predators and more.
Littlefoolbook is the companion I wish I’d had growing up. It’s a confessional of sorts, but also a manual (the do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do kind) for other modern young women like me who shouldn’t have to feel alone.
Because we’re female and we’re in this together and sometimes the greatest happily-ever-after comes from falling in love with yourself, first.
TWEET IT: Sometimes the greatest happily-ever-after comes from falling in love with yourself, first.
*Yes, I AM calling myself a strong, brave, and independent women.
4. How long does that take?
I’ve been writing littlefoolbook on and off, for almost 2 years now.
I know there are experienced authors out there who rattle off books like nobody’s business, but this is my first. I’ve never written a book before. I’m figuring it out as I go.
I can’t say for sure if it will be done next month or next year. But I’m working hard to get it into your hands sooner rather than later.
5. How many pages is it so far?
6. How will you know when it’s finished?
People keep asking me how I’ll know when it’s done, and I always tell them, I’ll just know.
How do you know when you’re done taking a number 2? You just know.
So, it’s like that.
7. Where are you publishing it?
Honestly, I’m not entirely sure.
I have this romantic notion of doing things the old fashioned way. You know, getting an agent who believes in me and my words enough to send my manuscript out to all the publishing houses, to eventually get swooped up by Penguin or Grand Central or Scribner or HarperCollins (OR ANY OF THEM AT ALL), and then my hypothetical agent and I will do a little happy-dance in her office when she tells me the news and everything will be wonderful.
Failing that, I will cry myself to sleep for a couple of nights and then find another way to get it into your hands. Maybe I’ll self-publish, turn it into an e-book, or release the whole damn thing on this blog.
8. When can I read it?
I appreciate your eagerness to read my humble words. You can read littlefoolbook as soon as it’s published — and you can count on me letting you know the moment that happens (and even before).
But, for now, you can enjoy snippets of chapter teases and my thoughts on littlefoolbook related topics (read: being female in the 21st century) by perusing through my blog, here.
Better yet, sign up below to have curated littlefoolbook content delivered straight to your inbox. (You'll also be part of the #girlgang that receives exclusive littlefoolnews, never-seen-before chapter tease's and more.) #NoSpam
9. But like, how do you make money?
In one of my very first writing workshops in University, my prof scanned the room of 12 wide-eyed wannabe poets with sharpened HB pencils cocked and at the ready, and he said:
“So you wanna be writers, huh?” (silence, a few nods.) “I hope you’re not in it for the money.”
If I could have another profession that I would enjoy half as much as I enjoy being a writer and make a decent living, I might take it.
But, (unfortunately for me and my family) I love to write. And I find ways to make money at it. As a freelance writer, I offer my writing services to clients, brands, and businesses.
This is the part where I insert a blatantly selfish plug (because this is MY blog after all, so I can totally do that). If you are a client, brand, or business and you like my writing, you can hire me, here.
10. So do you just, like, write from home in your pajamas?
Other times, I get dressed in the morning like a normal 21st-century human being, but instead of going into an office to write, I go to coffee shops, or parks, or libraries, or museums.
11. But how do you actually do it?
Not having a TV helps.
My days usually involve waking up when I hear my S.O. get out of bed, then lying in bed for at least 10 more minutes scrolling through Instagram, eventually getting up and making myself (an entire pot of) coffee, and then settling into my writing.
Unless I have a looming client deadline, I try to only focus on littlefoolbook related writing in the early morning. Around noon, I’ll check my emails and then spend the afternoon working on any client projects I may have.
So yeah, the TL;DR of all this is that writing a book is insanely hard.
Getting up and out of bed when you don’t have a “real” job, is also tough. It requires a lot of discipline (that I haven't always had), and an ample amount of passion (that inevitably waivers depending on my varied emotional states).
But if someone told me they’d pay me a million dollars a day to rub sunscreen onto Justin Bieber, I’d still choose to be a writer. (Okay, I’d probably ask if I could spend my downtime—when the Biebs is indoors—writing.)
I believe in my voice and in my words, and I’ve got some things to say about some things. Like Girls’, Hannah Horvath says, “I think I may be the voice of my generation. Or at least a voice. Of a generation.”
(Shoutout to Lena Dunham for creating a fictional character that just gets me.)
As ALWAYS, thanks for being here. Littlefoolbook is yours.
Any other questions? Feel free to comment below :)