Monday, February 11, 2013

When the Personal Is the Professional

As a writer, you are your brand.  As a self-published writer, your brand is the most important thing you have.  But what happens when that smiling, professional, upbeat, media-friendly you isn't any of those things?

My grandma is dying.

Any minute, I could get the call.  I saw her one last time and I told her I love her, and then, because there was nothing else for me to do about it, I had to go back to work and back to real life.  But I can't think of anything except how the world is suddenly lacking in security.  If anything was ever wrong, I knew I could go to Gram's and all the bad stuff would go away, at least while Gram fed me lunch. In case of apocalypse, my mom always said, "Go to Gram's."  The ranch is somewhat remote, and would presumably have been safe (and defensible) from anything from Communists to zombies.

But it was the people who made the ranch a home base, not the zip code.  Now, the last of those people is about to leave forever and I don't know what the hell else to do or think about.  Made-up stories haven't felt this stupid to me in a long time.  

When you are your brand, it's a luxury to go radio silent on social media.  But I have to, for a few more days.  I can't think of anything to say that would enlighten you or help you or generally advance the conversation about writing. I will try to fix that, once I figure out where my next apocalyptic safehouse is going to be.