Would you believe me if I told you that this entire time I was still working on that fucking press release????
It's actually done now, but you'd think that I'd never written a press release before in my life. The weird thing about this one was that I kept writing two press releases in one, basically. I kept losing my focus. The beginning of the press release stated one thing, and then midway through I was clearly focusing on something else. What's weirdest is that, you know, I would do this for hours -- focus on these details that had nothing to do with the press release I really wanted to write. Then I'd take a break, saying to myself, "Good, good, good; we're almost done." Then I'd come back -- refreshed, as it were -- read what I'd written and go: What the fuck???? Am I out of my mind????
Finally, I sent it to Philippa for help, who took about 14 seconds, sent it back and said: "This is what you want to say." And she had bascially written my entire press release.
14 seconds vs. weeks. Clearly I missed my calling as a professional publicist.
You know, back in the mid-90s, in the early days of my writing career when a writer didn't need to wear quite so many hats, I was always more than happy to be superwoman and do everything. Do the actual writing, get the writing published, do the marketing & PR, build the companion websites for whatever it was I was promoting at the time, go out and do readings, throw launch parties, get press to show up -- meaning press like the Wall Street Journal and the NY Times. You know, real press. And also workout, weigh about 14 pounds, wear really high-heels, smoke like a chimney & drink like a fish while wearing a little black dress, have a blast and do it all over again with the next project.
And nowadays, when it's basically mandatory for a writer to do all this stuff or no one knows you're alive, I feel oddly reluctant to wear so many hats. In fact, I'll go so far as to say that all these hats give me a super bad hair day. You know what I mean???? Ack. When I should be constantly tweeting or linking in or writing op-ed type pieces and foisting them onto the Internet hither & yon, I find I'm curiously drawn to the unusual birds hanging out there in the mulberry tree, or "what's this blossoming so suddenly in my garden? I'll get a photo of this and post it to the blog!" kind of thing.
I've said it before but I'll say it again: In the past ten years, I've written 5 novels, edited 6 anthologies, published 2 collections of my own short stories and wrote 4 more novellas, a couple essays and a short memoir... I even wrote a very, very short story of exactly 300 words that got picked up for this super cool fine art book! (Oh, and I also founded the EAA in the middle of all that.) And all the while I was updating the websites, updating the websites, updating the websites; blogging, blogging, blogging; promoting, promoting, promoting...
Jesus. Now all I really want to do is kick back and write something simple yet profound, something that just delights me while leaving me time to watch the birds and see all the flowers blossoming... and now all those things I used to do because I enjoyed doing them, I suddenly have to do or I have no career left.
Hmmm. Crimony. Well, since I wouldn't know how to function if I had no career left, I guess it's off to the hat store, gang. I hope you have a great Friday, wherever you are and whatever you're doing! I'll be thinking of you! Thanks for visiting. See ya.
About Marilyn Jaye
Causes Marilyn Jaye Lewis Supports
The Film Council of Greater Columbus, Columbus, OH
The Adrienne Shelley Foundation, NY, NY
Paralyzed Veterans of America, Washington, DC...