My Book Epiphany

Yesterday Erica and I spent almost 8 hours at the King of Prussia Mall. Torture? Not when you’re with your bestest friend in the world. (+5 points for Bryan)

Around 7:00pm we split up because my soul couldn’t take another trip into Old Navy. I headed into the bookstore where I had this bizarre exchange:

I pulled a book off the wall and was looking at the cover, standing about 2 feet from the wall. A man appears to want to walk between me and the wall and then stops. I assume he wants more room, so I step back another foot, giving him an ample 3 feet to scoot by. I am holding the book in front of me as I read the cover.

Weird Man: (mumbling) Could you please pick your book up higher so I can walk by? I am claustrophobic and I would like some more room.

Me: (wondering why someone with claustrophobia wouldn’t just walk around me instead of insisting on squeezing between me and the wall): Sure.

I pick up the book above my head.

Weird Guy (in a sarcastic tone because he apparently thought I was annoyed with him, which I wasn’t): I mean, if it’s not too much for you?

I didn’t say anything and he kept mumbling to himself as he walked by.

There are some strange ducks out there in the pond. Anyway, the point of this post was that after that bizarre exchange I went to the sports section and picked up Drew Magary’s new book, “Men With Balls”. Drew writes for a couple sports blogs I read. He’s extremely funny, and extremely profane. Personally, I think he’s at his best when he’s not throwing in random F-Bombs just for fun, but that’s just me.

As I was leafing through the book, I think I had an epiphany about my book. Drew’s book was funny, that was to be expected. But the format of the book was not traditional. It wasn’t just a bunch of prose. There were graphics, sidebars, lists, and other things that broke up the text and made it more easily digestible. But I don’t think the point was to make it an easier read, I think the point was that this was the type of book Drew wanted to write and he wrote it. He didn’t take his voice and his material and fit it into the traditional style of a book.

When I first started writing my book last year, it was going to be overtly funny and subtly Christian. I wrote about half of it, and as you know, it was not picked up by any Publishers. Recently, I decided to make the book more focused. Now it was going to be overtly Christian, and subtly funny. I was going to take out the parts of the book that were mostly humor, in favor of the pieces that had more spiritual substance. Still a book I thought I was capable of writing, and one that I thought would have a better chance of selling.

Well yesterday, leafing through Men With Balls, that all changed. I am going to write the book that I want to write. The book that I should write. I’m a funny writer. That’s what I am. Or at least, that’s what I’m pinning my hopes on. If this book succeeds, it will be because when you read it, it makes you laugh and want to read more. If it fails, it will be because you’re not laughing. Will it still be spiritual? Absolutely. Overtly spiritual. And overtly funny. Who says I can’t have both?

So that’s my new game plan, and honestly, I couldn’t be more excited about writing it.
I am going to be true to my original vision for the book, and I am going to write with my own unique voice, for better or for worse. Not in a voice that I think will sell a book. Honestly, if the book I write doesn’t get picked up for publishing, that’s okay. Really, it is.

Oh, and could you back up from the computer screen a bit more while you’re reading my blog? I’m a bit claustrophobic and you’re making me uncomfortable. If it’s not too much for you…