(t! would be proud of this post title. It’s the name of a song.)
I’ve been all over the place this week. From the heights of confidence to the depths of despair, from anxiety attacks to listless not-caring, I’ve seen it all. And it’s only Thursday morning.
While I made dinner and he washed the dishes, I asked HRH if he thought it was my body reacting to a reduction in the dosage of medication I’ve been on for a while and thus I was overreacting (let’s hear it for hormones!), or if things were understandably wonky in my life. He pointed out that while the medication adjustment probably wasn’t helping, not only was I writing a book to deadline for the first time ever, I was teaching, preparing for a concert in two weeks, dealing with the Zombie Manuscript from Hell (now with Shifty Author!), suffering from a lack of sunlight, and had struggled through three colds in succession. He’s also of the opinion that losing my computer has thrown me harder than I think it has. (This is probably true, although it’s oddly liberating at the same time. Of course, I’ve lost all record of log-in info for my website, but that can be remedied by contacting my host and telling them that I’m an idiot and forgot to write things down.)
You know what’s really gnawing at me about the Zombie Manuscript From Hell? The fact that I’d finally reached a point where I was confident about it. I was happy with it, proud to have my name on it as editor. I was confident that it was a solid, saleable product with excellent information delivered in a sophisticated and accessible fashion to the intermediate practitioner.
Of course the info is good. The author had already published it elsewhere.
I have no idea where this leaves us. This was supposed to be the lead title to launch the series. Part of me wants to punish the incredible dishonesty of the author by canceling the book. We’ve put so much time, money, and work into it, though, that we can’t. Think of all the rewrites, repeated edits, more rewrites we’ve done. Another option is to do an emergency rewrite on the pages and pages of plagiarized information. I certainly wouldn’t trust the author to do it, so I would likely do it instead, which puts the screws on my own book written for my own deadline.
I shouldn’t worry about this until I’ve heard what the company’s legal recommendation is. I’m creating more stress, which I really don’t need.
My contracts, which were mailed out April 14 but still hadn’t arrived as of yesterday, apparently ended up Returned to Sender because of a mistype on the address label, so they’re being mailed back to me today (and yes, the address has been corrected). It’s frustrating, because half my fee is disbursed upon signing. That means when they get the signed contract back, it goes into the 4-6 week bureaucratic process before the cheque is issued and mailed to me. It’s now delayed by an extra three weeks, which means I’ll get it mid- to late June. Then the bank will hang onto it for a month, which means I’ll finally have that money mid- to late July. The second half of my fee is issued upon delivery of the manuscript, which is due July 1. When you do the math, that means I’ll be handing the dratted thing in before I see a penny. Mind you, it also means that I’ll have the second cheque finally landing in my account mid- to late August, which is nice to count on. And sometime between now and midsummer I’ll see my editor’s fee for the second book, and the first book (if it gets published).
On top of it all, I’m restless, but I don’t want to go out. Just call me an enigma.