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Monday, 14 May 2018

Your first moments as a writer, probably mermaid-free.

Now that you are about to become a fully fledged author (or are thinking about it, or even if you aren't you are reading this, so you must be mildly interested), you may think that signing that first contract for publication will be the high point of your career.

Well, it might. But, on the other hand, it is almost certain that the contract will arrive by email, you will have to print it out and then sign and post it back. It will not - contrary to what you may imagine -  be hand delivered by mermaids on unicorns. Actually, a mermaid probably wouldn't be able to ride a unicorn, when you think about it, she'd just keep sliding off. Even sidesaddle wouldn't help, because you have to sort of cock one leg over the top of the other, and a mermaid hasn't got any legs to cock.
I think we can all see that this isn't going to work, can't we?
So, whilst it might be a nice idea that just results in a faceful of pavement for your mermaid and a unicorn galloping unrestrained around your local streets, you are probably not going to have this problem.

Almost positively, the day your contract comes by email will be the day the dog swallows a pair of tights, a child comes down with an illness you are sure is chicken pox, there will be Marmite all over the kitchen and a strange smell behind the fridge. You won't have seen the cat for three days, the TV remote will have vanished and there will be a letter from the bank that has a tint of red around the edges.

You will print out the contract with one hand whilst on the phone to the vet with the other. With your third hand you will take the temperature of the ill child. When you finally sign and return the contract, you will be so distracted that it will hardly even register. And your pen will probably run out half way through, so part of your signature will be done in green pen, because it will be the only one you can find that works, but will make you look as though you forgot your own name part way through.
You will have had a lovely pen all ready for this momentous..errr...moment, but you'll forget all about it when the time comes. You'll probably be so distracted that you will post the contract back without a stamp.

Don't worry. The rest of your writing career will consist of moments like this all joined together, so you might as well start as you mean to go on.


Ingrid Senger-Perkins said...

I love this! I think this is true of much things in life. I have never signed a contract, but an acceptance in an anthology almost got missed! So glad to have found this blog :)

Sue McDonagh said...

Checks for CCTV....
The mermaids and Unicorns are all in my head. Does that count? Xx