Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Wednesday 01/06/11

So this is the awkward stage in my life, these few months before my book comes out, where I’m kinda thinking that maybe something will happen when it does, something will change and I won’t have to work anymore, or in any case I won’t have to work in the same sense that I’ve known all these years since I left University, i.e. going into an office from Monday to Friday and working for a big corporation and waiting for the weekend and then repeating the following week and doing this until I’m 65. Is it 67 now? When have they set ‘retirement age’ for? 68? It feels like someone just pulls these numbers randomly out of the air, completely arbitrarily. As if I’m going to live that long, as if any of us will. And until September when the book comes out, I’ve kinda already given up on all this full-time employment business, and I’m blindly hoping that I’ll ‘break out’ or become a ‘literary sensation’ (because it’s 1922 in my head) or ‘find fame and fortune’ and I’ll be able to spend the rest of my life (or whatever’s left of it anyway), casually working on subsequent novels, living off huge advances, but really just traveling up and down the west coast of the United States, flying to properties that I own or rent in desired holiday destinations as perceived by the residents of metropolitan cities in the western hemisphere (Cabo is an actual place, right?) and taking unplanned trips to southern European capital cities – even Athens – where I’ll be getting drunk outdoors on warm Wednesday nights with mixed groups of ‘cool’ locals and other careless travelers who don’t have to get up in the morning to go to work. And I’m counting on one novel to accommodate this for me, one measly novel that would probably need to sell more than fifteen million copies for the plans that I have in mind to actually materialise. And I don’t think it will, though I do like it a lot and I stand by it like no one’s fucking business. So 2011 is my so-called ‘wasted year’, the year that I’ll look back on when I’m 45 and think, God, was I young and dumb or what? Because nothing’s gonna happen, none of this anyway; instead I’ll bum around for a few months, the book will come out and sell a few hundred copies, I’ll do a few readings here and there with progressively sparser attendance before it finally clicks that this is not how things were meant to work out for me and I’ll go back with my tail between my legs and ask if my desk is still there, same person as before, only minus the false impressions and a little more broken. Well, a lot more broken actually. So yeah, I guess this is a one-off stretch in my life right now, where I have a few months of ‘hope’ (read: ‘delusion’) ahead of me before it all crashes down, and it’s an interesting and precarious stretch where I can sell myself as someone who’s about to do something…before my remaining years arrive, which I’ll have to spend as someone who almost did.


Exit Through The Wound is out in 99 days.

35 comments:

Alex F. said...

Frank.

I hope that you will get what you want - honestly. Even though they say that true artist should be hungry to be creative.

Anonymous said...

Do you not think there's something slightly attractive about living out a souless, meaningless existence? In a very odd, sad way.

riggledo said...

Wow! You kinda took the words out of my mouth. Well, in a general sense anyway.

I always hope that "something" will happen to provide me the opportunity to live the lifestyle to which I would like to become accustomed.

As it happens, I'm writing a book right now. Something that, for the first time, I feel really proud of and hopeful/optimistic I might actually be able to get published. (I'm a long way from finished and may be completely delusional, but... whatever.) I have fantasies of having my book be published, become a break-out success and turn into my ticket to easy town where I can sleep till noon, get up and write for a couple of hours and just generally have whatever I want out of life.

I learned from an on-line friend/first time author that frequently, that's not the way of these things. Dammit.

Here's hoping your book opens the doors to anything and everything you want out of life!

Brant said...

Epic post!

London Preppy said...

alex: Thank you. And I guess what you say does sound true

anon: Uhm, I'm not sure what you mean by 'soullesl, meaningless existence'. I guess people can romanticise anything

riggledo: Ha, I guess anyone who writes (and knows very little about the real world, like you and I) has the same 'dreams'

Anonymous said...

Your novel will be a success. You will be able to have the freedom you seek to a large extent. Pieter

London Preppy said...

anon: Pieter, I don't know who you are, but I love you so

Ben said...

14 weeks and 1 day
99 days
2,376 hours
142,560 minutes
8,553,600 seconds

Not sure why I did that. I'm feeling numerical. Hope it drags / flies by (delete as appropriate).

W said...

Its post like this which tap directly into a line of thinking that me, and i presume many other people get from your writing.

Part of me hopes your book is a huge success and you get to try out that life, but i have to be honest and say a part of me does not. That's not supposed to sound horrible, and it's not because i dont wish you well, but it is undeniably a feeling at the back of my mind. (probably one for therapy)

Anyway, I looking forward to the read and whatever you do, make sure Richard and Judy love it. By whatever means possible.

London Preppy said...

ben: Thanks for this. I'll spend the next few weeks counting down seconds

w: I actually completely understand how someone can have both feelings. It's fun to watch someone fail, there's no doubt about that. And I know it's not always a malicious sentiment; it's just human nature

Jeanine said...

Come on LP, show the rest of us how it's done.
I imagine a ridiculously high percentage of people think they have 'a book in them' and daydream about what it would be like to be an financially independent author.
You're actually doing it and I think only the most mean-spirited among us could wish you anything but the very best.
PS/ start working on the second one
PPS/ Melbourne is lovely :-)

London Preppy said...

Aw Jeanine, I miss you x 1,000. And I have so many stories to tell - Dream Boat stories, F-B stories, etc, etc. You can expect a nice facebook message tomorrow

AlwaysReadySF said...

I don't know anything about you apart from what you post on here but I do agree with some of the other comments: most people don't get to write a book and get it published... So have faith that things will work out. Maybe it won't get SO big on the first book... But then again I think things worth having in life require some work. Plus if you had it all at 30 you'd end up fat and dissatisfied by age 38 ;)

On a different note, did you see that they are going to have Coachella on TWO different weekends in 2012? I dunno how I feel about that. Same lineup, supposedly. My snobbish side feels like "why the hell are twice as many people getting to go"??

London Preppy said...

alwaysready: I did see that. I'm not sure I'm a huge fan either. It kinda feels that one of the two weekends is bound to be worse, and knowing my luck, I'd go to that one. Not that I'm going next year. They are ridiculous - tickets on sale today and line-up announced next March???

beralex said...

Enough already. More pics of you looking filthy hot, please.

Nathan said...

At least if your dreams are shattered we'll continue to have things in common.

mkf said...

is the book as real as this post?

London Preppy said...

beralex: You need tumblr for that sort of thing, don't you?

nathan: Amazing

London Preppy said...

mkf: At points

AlwaysReadySF said...

I think by default the first weekend will be better as it will be a fresher experience for everyone (did I just use the word "fresh"? Yuk).

There is no way they are going to sell a lot of tix so far in advance, especially with no lineup. By guess is that there will be still plenty to go in Jan or whenever it is they announce it.

I think they are being greedy and they will be punished :)

bryan said...

LP,

John Steinbeck's first three novels went unnoticed and not until his fourth novel and received greater success on his sixth novel "The Grapes of Wrath"

You love to write and we love to read your stories. In the name of the west coast of united states - "Bitch, please don't give up!"

London Preppy said...

bryan: As a representative of the west coast, where I hope to spend 6 months of each year at some point, I take your comment VERY seriously and I will NOT give up

Anonymous said...

da new woody allen movie "midnight in paris" centers on writing (or at least dreaming of writing) with the greats in da 1920's. writing's golden era? but, i couldn't identify. there were, however, about 50 people in the theatre a billion years old that seemed to enjoy it. Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Faulkner were all in the movie, as was Picasso and Dali, but they were painters... a writer's dream i guess.

London Preppy said...

anon: Just watched the trailer - I really, really, really want to see this now. Not out in London yet though, it seems. Thanks for pointing it out

Anonymous said...

First time poster, long time reader here. Its strange to read this as it seems your character as LP and you as a person are coming closer together. Or am I wrong? Is that weird? I think the video might have been the turning point. I love the style of the blog and i'm sure the book is going to sell (i've ordered mine), but I hope this won't send you in to retirement as I need something to continue to make me smirk at life. Maybe this one can sell like a mill, the next two etc. and you get to keep writing (at least until i'm rich enough to retire too). Smiley face.

London Preppy said...

anon: Thanks for the comment. I think what is happening is that I'm actually putting posts up (and the video) as North, instead of the LP character, which I suppose is something most people who've read the blog for ages haven't seen before. Thanks for ordering the book. I like your sales projection model too

Wyler said...

"where I’ll be getting drunk outdoors on warm Wednesday nights with mixed groups of ‘cool’ locals and other careless travelers who don’t have to get up in the morning to go to work."

What's to keep you from doing that right now? What's to stop you from the impromptu visit to Athens now? And it sounds like you've already made visits to the California coast, your dream is right at hand, go for it.

Anonymous said...

You're welcome. If all else fails there's always a career as a porn star no? Also why are you not planning on living long? You look rather healthy...are you adopting a live fast die young approach/ planning the 'such a tragic loss and so young' type scenario? Dramatic.

creme brulee said...

Preppers, that was an incredibly pessimistic post- are you sure you're not Scottish?

Expect the worst....hope for the best big man!

Anonymous said...

5 years ago, when my first book was being released, I had many of the same fantasies. 20,000 copies later it was enough to get me two more book deals, but not the success I had hoped for. I'm now working on my 4th book and settled on the fact that this is just another job. And trust me, book signings and interviews SUCK after about the 2nd week.

London Preppy said...

anon: a) Is it better than getting up at 0755 and going into an office for 10 hours every day though? b) I guess some people will never be happy ;-)

Jake said...

You should be working on your next novel, now, about a 20-something preppy gay guy in London who's just written his first novel.

Jake said...

You get up at the same time as me in the morning...creepy.

London Preppy said...

Oh Jake. That is not the real time when I get up

Polo-Boy said...

Substitue photography for writing and you have just posted the inside of my head. Someday, someday, someday.....