Laugh In Its Face

Rockefeller Center, New York (Amy K. Nichols)

Rockefeller Center (Amy K. Nichols)

Tuesdays have become our unofficial weekly confession day here at the PLC. Our aim this year is to keep it informal, and keep it real.

So, here’s where I’m at: I’m about to take on the task of revising my manuscript based on my editor’s notes and suggestions. Despite the fact they are really good suggestions (seriously, I’m not BSing here), the prospect of the work makes me want to hide in the closet and eat all the chocolate in the house. It just feels very big and I feel very small.

I told my guru, Jim Sallis, about how I felt. His advice was awesome: Laugh in its face.

A week or so ago I took a quick trip to New York. I wanted to get to Central Park and the Met, and knew the cheapest and fastest way to get there would be the subway.

The subway scares me. I live in a very spread-out city without extensive public transportation. So, the New York subway system felt very, very big to me. Big enough to get lost in, for sure, being my own small self. (Some of your might be shaking your head. You take the subway every day. But I’m sure there’s something out there that seems big and scary to you.)

As I walked from my hotel toward the subway station, knowing I still could hail a taxi at any moment, I realized something: if I chickened out and didn’t take the subway, I’d be really disappointed with myself.

So I took the stairs down into Penn Station with all the commuters, got a ticket, found the right platform and got on the train. Six stops later, viola, Central Park.

The big scary thing turned out not to be so big and scary after all. A good thing to remember for lots of things in life, including novel revisions.