On the Thursday afternoon of March break 2017, out of the blue, I received an email from Julia, an associate acquisitions editor at Adams Media, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, asking if I'd be interested in authoring a book of humorous comics about yoga, meditation, and mindfulness.
Yes! Yes! Yes!
Breathe, Cathy, breathe.
I played it cool, and asked to set up a call to chat about the details.
The next morning, I left my activity-filled home (read: loud children on March break) to get a nice cup of coffee. I then drove to a nearby, quiet, tree-lined street and parked my car (read: mobile office) and sipped on my cappuccino as I waited for Julia's 10:00 AM scheduled call.
By 10:20 AM, I had a book deal!
(It took almost 20 years to get to the point where a publisher is contacting me, but that story is for another time.)
They wanted to release the book at the end of this year, so there was a lot to do, and fast!
First there was the contract details to negotiate. I'm happy to report that I got everything that was important to me, and I believe they did too.
Then, I went through the entire 700+ cartoons in my archives, and sent the best ones to the publisher for their consideration.
Then I got down to work. The book needed 50 new cartoons pronto. I said I could do it, and I did, but OMG did I ever work my butt off! I have friends who draw daily cartoons, and they're probably laughing their butts off because they have to draw a cartoon a day, every day, all the time. But for me, it's not a pace I'm used to, particularly because I was also experiencing a fresh bout of self-esteem issues related to success. There was a circular conversation in my head that went something like this: "Who am I to do/be/say anything important/worthy/valuable?". I'll tell you more about this later too, for now we'll leave it as a difficult period that I got through with the help of friends, and a mental health professional.
The publishing team and I went back-and-forth for months. Going over every archived and new cartoon to make sure that every word and every line was the best it could possibly be. We worked on an introduction and an acknowledgement page, where I thanked every one of you for reading, laughing and encouraging me to continue with your kind words and laughter.
Which brings us to today. The book is complete, at the printers, and available for preorder!
It'll be in my hands (and the hands of everyone who preorders) in mid November 2017. It'll also be available in book stores big and small, and maybe even in public libraries (fingers crossed).
It's called Unlightenment, A guide to Higher Consciousness for Everyday People, and you can pre-oder your copy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or IndieBound.