A quick glance at this page's right-hand sidebar will reveal that I'm the rookie of the group--a babe in the woods, so to speak:
My stalwart co-bloggers each have multiple published titles to their credit... that would be plural... more than one... the word books with the all-important letter "S" at the end. And then there's me, still a few weeks away from the May 8th debut of my first novel, A Field of Darkness.
If this were a baseball movie, Patty, Jacqueline, Paul, and James would be the sage mentor characters with the wry grins, a la Kevin Costner in Bull Durham, only with far more kickbutt-stellar batting averages.
I'd be the goofy Tim Robbins type, meanwhile--the one who's not exactly clear on the lyrics of "Try a Little Tenderness." The one whose best-intentioned first-season fastballs will probably end up knocking out "the sportswriter, the public address announcer, and the team's bull mascot... twice..." before he gets the slightest clue about how to comport himself on the mound.
(A confession--as baseball movies go, I far prefer this one:
because, hey, Walther Matthau and Tatum O'Neill could have made CURLING look like a great time, plus they got to have beer in their dugout.)
Last year, Sarah Weinman kindly invited me to try my hand at guest-blogging on her very fine Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind.
Field had been picked up by Mysterious Press the previous month, and I wrote a post about my state of mind in the aftermath:
The existence of a complete novel on my hard drive still surprises the hell out of me on a daily basis, and I'm not exactly sure how it happened. It's like suddenly remembering I built a cabin in Alaska all by myself, in between buying milk and frozen enchiladas and catching up on the laundry. It is very very cool.
It is also scary, in the same way that having to actually live in a cabin in Alaska that I built all by myself probably would be, especially because I still have to do the laundry and defrost enchiladas and everything.
This year, I'm working toward the existence of a second complete novel on my hard drive, and I'm weeks away from going on tour with Lee Child. HELLO... that's just downright surreal, for God's sake.
And as Peter De Vries once wrote:
Surrealism may be the last of the mayonnaise of romanticism oozing from the disintegrating club sandwich of the western psyche.
Though in my case, I gotta say it feels more like getting to savor the fromage-y Dada splendor at the heart of the enchilada--
--not least since I have the honor of group-blogging with such an all-star lineup of writers.
The idea of me hanging out in the Naked Authors' dugout is also both "very very cool" and "a little scary," as I consider Patty, Jacqueline, Paul, and James to be so scathingly brilliant--the veritable DiMaggios of crime writing.
Good thing there's beer.
Too bad I'm still catching up on the laundry.