Thursday, November 14, 2013

Not Quite Real Richard Keller

Sometime this holiday season, barring any unforeseen circumstances like an alien invasion or an announcement that Ryan Seacrest is purchasing Wyoming, my book Paradise Not Quite Lost will be released in both print and digital formats. At the point of publication I will sit in my underwear, watching reality programs, while the Nebulas, Pulitzers, and Nobels arrive at my door via FedEx. What? I’ve heard Stephen King and J.K. Rowling do this all the time. I’m going to be a published author, so sitting in my skivvies is mandatory.

Some of you are probably picturing the image, trying to wash it out of your mind with a high-pressured spray of soap up your nose, and asking “Rich, why aren’t you more excited about the release of your book?” and “You still wear Underoos?” To the second question … yes, because they come in adult sizes. To the first question … I’m not excited because it doesn’t feel real yet.

Sure, I’ve received a copy of the cover, sent preview reads out to a number of people, and polished my gold-burnished display case for all the accolades I’m about to receive, but I don’t think I’ll be able to shout in glee until the physical book is in my hands and is stained by my tears of joy. It comes down to my concepts of expectation versus reality. Something beautifully illustrated in the modern movie classic (500) Days of Summer.

There’s a scene in that film where the screen splits to show Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s expectation and reality of going to a party hosted by his kind-of former girlfriend, portrayed by the adorkable Zooey Deschanel. On one side of the screen we see Levitt and Deschanel’s characters hooking up and rekindling their romance. On the reality side of the screen we see Levitt’s character drinking alone and watching in shock as … well, rent the movie to find out.

I’ve done the over-expectation thing all my life and have been bitterly disappointed when it didn’t match the reality I faced. Yes, Paradise Not Quite Lost is going to be a success. Yes, there will be a sequel to the book. Yes, George Clooney or Justin Timberlake will play the main character. It’s just that I need to be in the presence of the situation before feel it.

In the end, after I do all the polishing I can and all my Underoos are lined up in my drawer right next to my extra-large Granimals with matching berets, I will glance out my window to see if the FedEx guy is coming up my path to leave a package on the doorstep more valuable than any award I’ll eventually obtain. And only when I rip open that box or envelope to pull out the shiny-covered copy of Paradise Not Quite Lost will I begin to feel the excitement.


Congratulations, Rich. I can tell you, holding that new physical book in your hands will bring tears to your eyes.

Richard S. Keller is a resident of Northern Colorado, a member of Northern Colorado Writers, and a contributor to The Writing Bug blog.


Margot Kinberg said...

Pat - Thanks for hosting Richard.

Richard - Congratulations on your release! It may not feel real yet, but it's a great thing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. And there's nothing at all wrong with Underoos!

Dean K Miller said...

Well deserved and long over due, Richard...I mean the adult sized UnderRoos. And congrats on the book, too!

Kenneth W Harmon said...

When my book came out, it made quite a few people cry once they started to read it. I wish I could say they were tears of joy. Oh well....congratulations Rich on the release of your book. Will you be having a local book signing?

RichardK said...

Sometime after the holidays I intend to have a book signing. Should I do it during the Christmas shopping season all I may get is "Is this where I have my purchase gift wrapped?"

Maggie D'Amato Goins said...

Rich- You`ll soon be zig-zagging with joy:)
Can`t wait to read it.

Julie Luek said...

Congratulations Richard! Oh the sweet satisfaction of seeing your books and being able to hold and smell them. As for the vision now dancing in my head of adult-sized UnderRoos... thank you. ;)

Patricia Stoltey said...

I had to go look up UnderRoos. I'm so clueless.

Thanks for being here, Rich. I always enjoy your posts so much.

RichardK said...

Maggie, I'll be wearing my beret when I receive the book.

Pat, I believe my next blog post will be on crazy children's clothing of the 1970s.

Patricia Stoltey said...


Anonymous said...

Congrats, Rich! Looking forward to getting a copy...I hope you're wearing a beret in your author photo.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Oh, Richard, I hope it is as wonderful as you hope. I have found some things about being published to be as joyous as I thought but I haven't had to make room on the mantle for any awards. Yet.

RichardK said...

April, I'm still looking for the right beret.

Susan, I believe you have to make the room "first" so the awards no they have a home to come to.

nutschell said...

Congrats Richard! lovely to meet you through Pat's blog. :)