Me! Or Half of Me, the book, which is tentatively titled Breaking Up With Lane Bryant: A Weight Loss Memoir to be published by the fabulous Seal Press sometime in early 2008. Yes, my children, I am now one of those annoying bloggers who got a book deal. So everyone who has been bugging me to write a book, you can shut up now.
I’d like to give a big shout out to the women of BlogHer, particularly the food bloggers and Kalyn of Kalyn’s Kitchen who mentioned Half of Me to my editor at the BlogHer conference last summer. You rock! Thank you especially for not charging 10%.
I was contacted by a Seal Press editor about the idea of writing a book at the end of September, right when I was pigging out on blueberry muffins in Boston. We e-mailed back and forth a bit and then I didn’t hear anything for two months. I didn’t want to get my hopes up at that point for fear that the fall would snap my spinal cord and kill me. I figured I had been blown off, but in reality the cyberspace demons had eaten my e-mail with a side helping of spam, and she later e-mailed me to find out why I’d gone missing. I put together a book proposal and got an offer on December 19, which was the nicest Christmas present I’ve gotten since that dollhouse my dad secretly built with a jigsaw and hot glue in the garage.
Then the publisher shut down for two weeks for Christmas. I did not stab my eyes out with sharpened candy canes, but only because being blind would make it hard to write. Also, my mom didn’t buy candy canes this year and it is hard to stab anything out with a holiday basket of pistachios. Up until that point I hadn’t told anyone about my super-secret negotiations, not even my cat. But I told my family once I got the offer, which is why suddenly several aunts and cousins started commenting on the blog at the end of the year.
All the contract details got hammered out this month and I got the okay from my editor to finally announce the deal. Which is good because I thought I was going to lose these last 30 pounds by exploding all over my keyboard. The jumping for joy probably burned a pound or two also. Let it never be said that PastaQueen can’t keep a secret. No safecracker or blow torch can penetrate this vault.
All of this has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the blog was mentioned in the Wall Street Journal on Monday. That was just a coincidence, though it gives me something to add to my author blurb.
I plan to keep posting to the blog while I write the book, so don’t worry about me vanishing. If anything, I will definitely be blogging until the release of the book just so I can remind you to buy it. If this is not incentive to keep the weight off, nothing is. I would hate to go to a book signing a year from now and have to explain why I weigh 300 pounds.
I would like to sincerely thank everybody who visits the site. I’ve kept writing because I knew there were people out there not only reading what I write and enjoying it, but finding hope and inspiration and maybe a little strength in it. I’ve found strength in you too. Without the blog, I would never have gotten the book deal. Your enthusiasm and confidence in me helped bolster my own confidence. When first presented with the idea of writing a book, I was hesitant and unsure. A blog is not a book and the thought of adapting it from one form to another was scary. But over the past months of working on the idea, I know I have something worthwhile to share, which hopefully won’t disappoint you. If you start putting away a dollar a month now, you’ll be able to afford it when it comes out!
Now, to answer some questions I think you will ask:
Are you going to quit you job and buy platinum bathroom fixtures with your book advance?
Ha, ha! No. I got a nice deal, but I’m not quitting my day job. Plus, my brother left his hardware store job a year ago, so I can’t even get a discount on bathroom fixtures anymore, platinum or otherwise.
When is the book coming out?
There is not a release date yet, but it will probably be sometime in early 2008, which is just in time for my high school reunion. So not only can I brag about losing a ton of weight, but also about my book documenting how I lost a ton of weight. Did I mention I lost a ton of weight? They are going to totally hate me and it will be awesome.
Are you going to go on a book tour?
The promotional aspects of the book are still being worked out. Right now I’m focusing on actually writing the thing. I will be sure to announce any signings, but that’s far in the future. If anyone wants me to come to their local bookshop, it might be arranged, but it would depend on money and time and a floor to sleep on and all that silly “reality” stuff.
WIll you remember me when you’re on Oprah?
Half the people I’ve mentioned this deal to think it comes attached with an invitation to Oprah’s book club. I would walk barefoot all the way up I-65 to Oprah’s studio if she invited me, but I’m going to keep my shoes on for the time being.
Are you going to mention the blog in the book?
In my chapter outline I have allotted an entire chapter to talking about the blog. However, the book will be about the experience of becoming fat and then losing half my body weight. The blog is an important part of that, but it will not be a book about the blog.
You know you haven’t actually lost half your body weight yet, right?
Dude, I’m on it. If I have to cut off a hand to get there, I’ll wield the Ginsu knife myself.
I am happy for you, but I also hate you a little. Is that okay?
That’s okay. I would hate me a little too. I will forgive you if you buy two copies of the book (receipts required for penance approval).