Thursday, June 11, 2009

The novel as journey: an odyssey in words, not geography

Perhaps the most interesting thing that happened to me on the journey to Dan's wedding (outside of the whales and bears and the 11-hour air trip, following the 9-hour bus ride, after the 15-hour ferry that followed the 3-hour drive) is the phone call I received from Susan while waiting to begin my odyssey at DFW airport.

She told me my novel has made it through the ranks at her publisher and is under consideration.

It occurs to me that the path to getting published isn't unlike the journey I have just taken to a wedding in the northern reaches of British Columbia - reaches so northern that Alaska was just 40 nautical miles away.

Between constantly combing the horizon for whales and bears and the dynamics of interacting with siblings and friends, I feel I am light years away from where I started on May 30, a perception that is echoed in the book writing process.

Embarking on the 50,000-plus word journey toward a completed book is even more of an odyssey. Though the personal changes required are not geographical in nature, they are revolutionary in nature.

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