Over the weekend, my husband and I were taking a hike, and he told me about a podcast he’d been listening to. In it, a Broadway actor named David Costabile—who also played Gale Boetticher on Breaking Bad—told a story about auditioning at the Schubert Theatre, which was the first Broadway theatre he’d ever been in. He walked out on stage and said, “Listen, before I get started, I just have to do this.” Then, in a fit of excitement, he ran around in a circle screaming: “Whooo-hoooo!” The point I took from this was, sometimes, when you’re having a moment, you don’t care if you look like a dork. You’re just overcome with excitement and have to let it out.
So here I am, less than two months from the release of my debut novel. The manuscript for Terror in Taffeta has been out of my hands for months now getting turned into an actual physical book. The proofers have made their comments, bookstores are looking at it in my publisher’s catalog, book jackets are being printed, blog tours are being planned.
In the meantime, I’ve hardly had time to think about it. First, it was the holidays. Then, right after the new year, my day job heated up and I’ve been inundated with work—which is what we in the freelance biz call “a good problem to have.” And most importantly of all, I’ve been hard at work finishing Book Two, trying to bring the killer to justice. I’m literally paragraphs away from typing those two little words that every writer longs to hear: The End.
Meanwhile, things have started happening with my book. The first Monday of the new year, my editor wrote to say I’d gotten a Kirkus review. A review?!? Like real books get? Wow, suddenly Terror in Taffeta went from “that book I wrote a while back” to “that book that’s coming out soon.” Unfortunately, Kelsey was right in the middle of picking up a key piece of evidence while eavesdropping, and she may or may not have gotten herself trapped in someone’s closet, so I set aside my excitement and got back to work.
Then, my publicist wrote me to say she’d set up my first book signing, and before I knew it, my picture was up on my favorite bookstore’s website. “Oh my God,” I thought. “This is really, really happening.” I spent a few minutes shopping online for taffeta dresses, but then I realized Kelsey was still being held at gunpoint and I needed to figure out how to get the two of us out of this pickle.
Just this weekend, after the police cars had carted away the murderer and I’d given the story a proper denouement, I looked up and realized that some pretty exciting things are happening in my own life. After a couple of decades of being a writer, I’m about to be an author.
So listen. Soon I’ll turn in book two and I’ll switch from writing mode into enjoying-this-crazy-moment mode. But before I get started, I just have to do this:
Marla Cooper is the author of Terror in Taffeta, a humorous traditional mystery about a destination wedding planner who is called on to investigate when one of the bridesmaids drops over in the middle of the ceremony. Coming March 22, 2016 from Minotaur Books.