Impostor Syndrome

I'm editing a book.

I have trouble saying that. It sounds like a task from someone else's life--someone glamorous, who fluently speaks four languages and hosts dinner parties. Well, this person says off-handedly to her guests, who are all successful artists, I had to finish editing the antepenultimate chapter this morning. We're heading to France tomorrow, you know, and I haven't packed my shampoo yet.

She would probably say toiletries.

Meanwhile, I have also finished editing the third to last chapter of my book this morning, but I do not have a dinner party filled with poets and musicians and painters. Instead I have:

  1. A lawn growing past my knees
  2. A brick driveway filled with weeds
  3. A garden merrily going to seed
  4. 10 rooms undertaking entropy
  5. Not taken a shower

We prioritize. We all do it, and then we feel badly about it in penance. "I will take out the garbage with the minute I have available, and then later I will spend my free hour feeling bad that I didn't do the dishes."

Every time I look at my driveway, I cringe. What must the neighbors think.

So I'm editing a book. It's the longest thing I've ever finished.

I'm proud of it.

I also sometimes think it's terrible.

It might be terrible.

But it might be pretty good, too, to the right person. I'm trying to work out, right now, what I want to do with it when I'm done.

(That's a joke. Ask a writer if they've finished their novel. Be ready with a box of tissues.)

Maybe I'll offer a digital copy here and do some kind of on-demand printing. I've heard good things about Lulu. Would people be interested? Who knows.

But I've edited the antepenultimate chapter of my novel, and that is something.