Okay, so a big part of being a professional writer is maintaining your “cool.” When you meet other writers at a conference like the Nebulas or ConFusion, you try to casually shoot the shit like you’re at the average water cooler, congratulating some bestselling author whose work you adore on their latest book without fawning over them. When you chat with celebrity writers on Twitter, you remember that you’re just professionals talking where almost the entire world can see and that it’s no biggie. When someone invites you to work on a project because they like your style, you think critically about whether that’s a good idea for your career even though you want to scream for joy and say “yes, absolutely” because the sheer act of being invited makes you giddy.
Sometimes, though, I think one is justified in shedding off the “cool” writer mystique and geeking out about something exciting in their career – whether it’s writing an opinion piece that gets a ton of traction in the news (*nods toward friend who might be reading this*) or your new play getting rave reviews because your work is awesome (*smiles discreetly at no one in particular, I swear*). Not because we want to brag, but because sometimes you feel like maybe you’re at the center of some Make A Wish Foundation thing and don’t realize it.
The reason I’m excited right now is because after a successful Kickstarter a little while ago, an anthology called Timeshift: Tales of Time is available for preorder on Amazon. This was my first time being invited to participate in an anthology (and only time up until recently – shhh), which is wicked in and of itself, that an editor would read a story of mine and like it enough to republish it. When I saw the lineup of other authors, though, my jaw dropped: Cat Rambo (who’s delightful on top of writing awesome things), other heavyweights like Ken Lieu and Mike Resnick, and last but certainly not least, Kevin J. Anderson.
Now you might say, “Brandon, being in an anthology with any big writers is awesome” and you are absolutely right. But I’m going to indulge the faux pas of geeking out about another writer because one of my first entries into SFF was none other than Kevin J. Anderson. It’s no secret I’m a huge Star Wars fan, and that’s partly because some of the earliest novels I read were from the Expanded Universe. Individuals like Anderson, Timothy Zahn, Christie Golden, Michael Stackpole and others were my introduction to writing, really, and some of my first examples of what I wanted to become as an adult.
And now my work is in an anthology alongside one of those people. With sincerest apologies to any of my students who are reading this, that is really fucking cool.
So yes, as professionals we’re supposed to be suave and collected, and present ourselves as put together and undramatic. But sometimes you need to celebrate those special moments in your career.
And hope the person you’re talking about is too busy and important to ever read your blog.
My geeking out aside, Timeshift has a ton of excellent authors in it and I’m excited it’s finally available for preorder. If you like time travel stories, you can check it out via Amazon.ca or Amazon.com. And I hope you enjoy!
(Sidebar: You probably won’t see a post from me next weekend, since I’ll be at Readercon! First time heading out that way, and I’ve heard amazing things about this con and Boston in general. If you’ll be there, let me know!)