Today the mail brought me a box full of my new book, Nano Comes To Clifford Falls and Other Stories. As always, Golden Gryphon Press has done a wonderful job, with acid-free paper, appealing lay-out, and an enigmatic cover that does not scream PULP!! I like it, even the overly effusive Introduction by the irrepressible Mike Resnick (who better not "pinch me in any elevators.")
Holding a book you wrote is a strange experience, although it grows less strange with each volume. Like anything else, writing has a Law of Diminishing Returns. Or, to switch from economics to drugs, the first book published produces an amazing high, and after that you need more and more stimulant to get the same effect.
The very talented Jack Skillingstead just sold his collection of short stories to Golden Gryphon. When it appears in 2009, he will undoubtedly be levitating -- as he should be. Don't get me wrong; I'm very pleased to have this book, and I hope fervently that a lot of people read it. But another fact enters into this: I wrote the most recent of these stories three years ago, the oldest nine years ago. My attention is currently absorbed by what I'm writing now. Also, the hydrangea in the yard needs cutting back, I've got cookies in the oven, and I have to wrap my gift for my mother for Mother's Day, which is tomorrow. Somehow those rank almost as high as Nano.
Almost. But not quite.