I read J’s post on Monday about steps she took to promote The Wicked and the Just with particular interest. After all, my own debut novel will hit the shelves in only two short years—I’ve got to get a move on with this whole promotion thingy!
It’s a little early to try to get you excited about my book—I’d tell you the title, but it’s probably just going to change anyway—so instead I think I’ll focus my energies on establishing my own personal brand.
Who is this Tara Dairman? What’s her story?
Those are the questions I’ll be endeavoring to answer via blogging/Twitter/Facebook/Goodreads/Pinterest (psych! I’m not actually on Pinterest)/etc. over the next year and a half…or however long it takes before my ARCs come out and I actually have something book-related to talk about.
Standing out from the crowd is going to be an uphill battle, though—I can tell. I mean, I’m not even the first Tara to write on this blog. (Hi, Tara Lazar!) It seems that I’ll have my work cut out for me.
Where to start? When in doubt, I usually turn to my BFF, J.K. Rowling, for wisdom. People really seemed to like her rags-to-riches story, the whole struggling-single-mum-on-welfare-makes-good angle. So with that in mind, I’m going to tell you something—something that not a lot of people know about me.
The day I got what’s known in this business as The Call, I was at rock bottom.
I had just come off two years of homelessness.
I was sleeping in my car.
But then, the phone rang and changed my life. It was my agent, bearing news of an offer from New York. My first novel was going to be published!
Good story, huh? And it’s true, every word of it! Here’s the pictorial evidence.
See, when the call came through, I was at the bottom of a rock. A rather famous rock, actually.
I had spent the better part of the previous two years without a permanent home, vagabonding from place to place, eating the cheapest street food I could find…on purpose. It was all part of the epic, round-the-world honeymoon my husband and I had quit our jobs to undertake.
And the night of the day of The Call, when my husband and I found ourselves in a remote corner of North Dakota with every hotel for 50 miles unexpectedly filled up with oil workers, we did sleep in the car.
Wasn’t the first time we’ve done that, and I’m sure it won’t be the last—though it will hopefully be the only time I ever wake up to find an enormous pile of fresh buffalo poop right outside my window.
So, OK. Maybe I wasn’t homeless in the strictest sense of the word. Maybe, in context, my sympathy-inducing, author-brand-defining sob story is really just a run-of-the-mill submission story.
But the good news is that if my first book tanks and I do end up living in my car, I’ve got the press release all ready to go.