For my author photo, I wore makeup. Just enough to cover blemishes and touch up those dark circles. I also got dressed up and went through three wardrobe changes. Two things I dislike: dressing up, getting my picture taken. I’m okay with makeup, but I imagine if I had to wear it more frequently, I’d dislike that too.
But hey, at least I’m not this guy.
Yes, Tara’s post Monday immediately made me think of Bozo the Clown. You think the cat beneath the ghost makeup and red-winged hair enjoyed this outfit? Smile, Mr. Clown! Smile! Juggle, Mr. Clown! Juggle!
I am no doubt projecting. (I don’t think Bozo juggled.) I’m sure the dozens of Bozo incarnations through the years and markets loved everything they were told to do. Okay, maybe not, but you never saw the parts they didn’t enjoy.
Pat’s post on village people 😉 and Tara’s post both reference the idea of community. In a community, unless you’re supreme dictator (Pinky, we’re going to try to take over the world), sometimes you gotta wear makeup and smile for the camera even when the last thing you want to do is cut out another sentence.
But that was my favorite one. That’s a sentence that makes me actually want to smile. Hell, I’ll wear eyeliner for that sentence (note: I did not wear eyeliner).
Yes, I’m going through line edits. Lots of cutting. And I’d thought I’d already trimmed the fat…
Wait, editor is telling me to cut something that I only added because my agent thought it was needed. Maybe that’s what Bozo’s red-wings are for, so people can pull his head both ways and see if it explodes. If Bozo’s head explodes, does confetti come out?
But Holy Hell, I’m an artist and I’m supposed to be true to myself!!! Cue maniacal laughter. Or queue it, because there are a lot of other authors lined up, maniacally laughing.
Honestly, compromise blows. I want to eat twenty cookies, but mom’s only allowing me ten. But I really like cookies. That butter frosting, that chewy texture. I start eating them and the world disappears. It’s nothing but me and my cookies (note: if anybody needs a cookie monster for a child’s party, I will happily put on the outfit and grumble my way between mouthfuls).
Admittedly, I get obsessed with my cookies (and cupcakes (and parentheses)).
Editors, agents, etc. are amazing people. Sometimes they frustrate us because they keep taking away our cookies, sometimes different cookies, sometimes our favoritest ones (insert your favorite pejorative), but if we can take a step back, we realize all that cookie manipulation is not meant to make our brains confetti-explode. They’re trying to keep us in tip-top shape for our makeup and pretty outfits and book tours.
Definitely don’t want a bunch of crumbs in those books.
Metaphor out. Now I’m gonna go get a cookie and figure out how to take over the world.
Joshua McCune is the author of the Talker 25 trilogy (Greenwillow). Dragons, war, romance (though not with dragons – I don’t do bestiality). First one drops in early 2014.