Living the High Life in St. Louis
I've been trying to describe this to people and it comes out sounding like a McDonald's Playland. It's not like that at all! It's five stories of wire tubing, which you crawl through and then all the sudden you're in a burned out airplane, eye to eye with a real bird. Later, you slide down a slide that is so steep it's practically inverted.
Naturally, I was wearing flats. You know how, when you're up high, you think about how you could easily lose a shoe. That would be scary because you'd think, "Am I falling or is it just my shoe? Is my foot in that shoe?" The whole line of thought leaves your stomach in your throat. There were times where I had to convince myself getting to the end of the tube was a matter of life and death.
At one point, I turned to Justin and said, "This is the stuff nightmares are made of."
But it was a really cool nightmare, you know?
Johnny said, "I feel like we're some kids that found an abandoned place and turned it into this." It's the kind of place where you imagine stuff like that.
While in St. Louis, I also, ahem, met up with my agent. Did you know I have an agent? For my children's books. I feel funny mentioning it here because ever since I became a writer, I've gotten used to bad news. The good thing about bad news is it can be entertaining for others. Nobody likes to read about how you had breakfast with your, ahem, agent. When I got an agent, Richie asked, "Is she a secret agent?" So I guess that's why I've been keeping it a secret...at least as far as the blog is concerned.
In truth, she has sold three of my picture books (two written, one to-be written!) I don't believe it, either. It feels like something that's happening to someone else. In fact, if this is something that's happening to you and I'm passing it off as something that's happening to me, please let me know before I get carried away.
Hmm, why have I never done that before? You all seem to have interesting jobs. Successful. Purposeful. Why have I never pretended to have one of your jobs? And now it's too late because I have a job of my own. Guess I missed that boat.
Agent or no agent, children's book writing is a tough way to make a living. The good news is: Everybody's so nice! It's like you're in a business where your colleagues all happen to be your former kindergarten teacher. That's how nice they are. Which is great because I'm not exactly a tough cookie. I mean, occassionally I am. But as a rule, I'm more of an ice cream sandwich.
I've always wished I'd walk by somebody and they'd say, "There goes one tough broad." But that's never happened. So this business suits me just fine, and the meeting went great.
The picture books will come out next Spring...it takes a while!