DC is brilliant and wonderful and you should buy his book. Yay!
My book Crap Kingdom is available today, in stores, online, and on your eReader.
I am trying very hard to follow my girlfriend’s instructions, to resist my innate desire to douse what should be unadulterated pride and joy with self-doubt and self-loathing. Self-doubt and self-loathing are Nickleback on the modern-rock radio station in my mind. They are always on. But today I am trying very hard to drown them out.
I think I just realized I’ve been using the words “trying very hard” a lot lately. Usually in the context of “I’m trying very hard to get on the New York Times Best Sellers list.” Because I am.
I have been told by my very wise editor to temper my expectations regarding the Best Sellers list. They have this “secret sauce” they use to compute the list, and books that are in both paperback and hardcover have a natural advantage because there’s just more copies of them out there, and just like anything else, if you’re already on the list, you have an advantage over everything that isn’t on the list when it comes to, y’know, being on the list.
These warnings, well-reasoned and backed up by a lot of facts, and followed by assertions that the book is by no means a failure if it doesn’t make it on the list its first week, or ever, are like catnip to my self-doubt and self-loathing. Or, if we want to extend the Nickelback metaphor, they’re like, I dunno, Coors Light. (That seems like Nickelback fuel, right?) My self-doubt goes, yup! See? The game is fixed! The only people that can do it are the people who’ve already done it. And when somebody new does do it, it won’t be you, because you’re you. Other people are the total package, and you are a cobbled-together mess, and anyone who looks at you for longer than five seconds knows, with certainty, that you are not the real deal.
But I have other feelings that are almost always running through my head in parallel to Nickelback, thoughts I will go ahead and christen my internal Kanye West. At times like these, greeted either with frothing, unreasonable commenter-hate or completely reasonable well-intentioned and frankly dead-on advice to keep my expectations realistic so I don’t set myself up for unnecessary disappointment, my internal Kanye says, “But why CAN’T I do it? What if accepting even this totally reasonable tempering of expectations narrows the fuel line of my ambition even the slightest bit and THAT’S what results in me not making it across the finish line?”
Which is in many ways every bit as unhealthy as listening to my internal Nickelback all the time.
But you guys:
Kanye West is so good.