Collecting books signed by the author has helped me become an author myself.
A collection begins before it is a collection.
Authors are rock stars to those of us who read and ponder. How do they sit still and keep capturing words when we want to wiggle? How do they distill ideas into letters on a page when everything feels so overwhelming? I was drawn to hear them speak. I took them out for coffee. “Tell me how you got to the end,” I’d beg because I long to know what’s written on the last page.
What half finished projects do you have?
Are you a person with a half-finished manuscript? Is the afghan you started for your sister’s baby missing two rows? Are your tomato plants growing sideways because you got them planted but couldn’t manage to remember those cages for them to climb? I marvel at people who know how to cross the finish line.
So, conversation after autograph, now I have a collection of books on my shelf that are written by people I know personally, authors with whom I have spent time. Watching an author write my name on the title page of their book makes the whole process real and attainable.
Collecting offers your dream a “book binding”
Collecting these books gave my dream skin. Purchasing the kindle version of Margaret Reyes Dempsey’s novel The Benefactor suddenly gave me the willies because…how could I look at it on my shelf? So I wrote to her and asked her if she would be willing to sign a business card for me. She was thrilled to comply. She probably made something shy of $2 on my sale, but my collection and request for her autograph brought oodles of love and attention to her emotional bank account. I opened an envelope and out poured colorful love from her several days later.
Collections lead to completion.
With my completed my e-book, I have been invited to present, as an author, at my first venue. The Language of the Fantastic, hosted by Western Colorado Writers Forum. Now I will be seated along with some of the authors that grace my shelf and helped to bring me to this place.
We all have people we hope will read our writing. For me, it’s my husband who is a mountain man. I’m an idea girl. I long to someday write something that will make its way onto his nightstand. When he discovered Rick Bass would be at this conference his ears perked up. Bass writes about the valley in Montana where he lives and he wrote about grizzly bears in Colorado. Both subjects are intriguing to my husband. Did I rise in estimation because of the company I would keep?
I am personally most excited to meet Melissa Pritchard. Her article, Still God Helps You, affected me profoundly. The story is about a child slave who shows his scars like a heated knife burned into his chest and remembers a blue skirt from a young woman who he watched be raped repeatedly. His horrendous memories are recounted in her story but then he ends by saying, “I really wish I could sit down with every one of those people, show them my appreciation, show forgiveness.”
Start your own collection
If you have a dream looming inside you, I urge you to start a collection. Will your collection of bikes help you find your way to the race course? Are the number of canines in your home trying to prod you to open a kennel? Perhaps you will find that your collection helped you leapfrog from where you are today right onto the Lilly pad of life where you long to be.
In the meantime, would you be willing to support the dreams of writers on the Western Slope of Colorado? Hop over to our Kickstarter campaign where I am living my dream and appearing side by side with…drum roll please… other authors.
Then dream with us by joining gravity rocks, a weekly practice where I and others are trying to get grounded, celebrate the healing power of art in our lives and notice one true thing each week.