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Tuesday, June 11, 2013


I thought I knew how I was going to feel.   Why wouldn’t I?  I’d imagined this day ever since the journey began, and that’s nine years ago.  This was no personal, never-to-publish, cathartic work.  I’d just finished one of those.  In June 2004, when I took the first timid steps into The Corridor, I dreamed that one day others---you even---might read the story.  And then, best of all, maybe you and your friends and I could chat about it.  People person that I am, that’s what I was most looking forward to.  Intimate gatherings.  I imagined (almost) nothing would feel better.

But today, when Amazon first posted my Kindle book,
followed soon after by the paperback,
I felt…well…I didn’t really feel anything.  I’m trying, digging down for those feelings that must be there.  But I have yet to unearth them. 

Maybe I’m scared, I told myself.  Maybe readers will freak out.  Here I am, naked before the world.  The Corridor fleshed out a part of me that I let few see.  Or maybe no one will read it.  Or worse yet, readers won’t react.  Perhaps I’ll have no long-anticipated conversations.   

Nah!  That’s not it.  I’m not scared.  I’m the gold medal winner in fear recognition. 

Maybe I’m overwhelmed.  Too much, too fast.  I mean it was just today that Amazon said, “how about publishing a Kindle version”.  So I rebuilt all the Corridor maps, and the formatting, uploaded, set a $0.99 tantalizing price and pressed the publish button.   And then, I get this text from Linda saying my book’s on Amazon and I think she means Kindle but when I check---wading through a backwash of books with Corridor in the title---its Kindle AND the $14.24 paperback.  Yes, I’m stunned. 

But I’m not overwhelmed. 

Believe it or not I think I’m sad.  It makes no sense whatsoever—I feel so relieved to be done with writing and re-writing all seven versions and editing and copyediting and proofing and self-publishing---but truth is I feel grief.  It’s over.   By far the biggest project in my life and it’s over.    At least this part of it.    So I guess that’s OK.  Whether it makes sense or not, I can let myself grieve.  Out on the prairie maybe, with the breathtaking lupine.   Probably not with a smoking hot chainsaw.

My mom called today to tell me how much she liked the book (she qualified for the Mother’s Day galley copy) and said I should keep writing.  As appreciative as I was, I could feel her disappointment when I responded with a sigh.   “If people really like it, I’ll write another.  Some day.”  I told her.  “Right now, I want to reap the harvest.” 

So yes, read the book if you're drawn to it.  And then---please, please, please---invite me to a conversation.  With your book club.  Your church.  Your beer buddies.  Your school.  I could spend hours with just you and a cup of tea.   Don’t let distance daunt you.    I love Santa Rosa.  Galway.  Even Wisconsin.  And there’s always Skype. 

Thinking about a conversation with you, now that starts to get me excited. 

P.S.   If nothing else, you’ll finally figure out what Rah-dur means when you read it.


  1. Congratulations on having your book published! I love your blog so I just downloaded it to my iPad/Kindle app. Looking forward to reading it and I hope lots of other folks do as well.

    Perhaps we will get a chance to talk about it someday!


    Jim Jenal

    1. Thank you Jim! Speaking of talking about it, could you let me know if anything looks wrong on your iPad? I don't have an iPad or Kindle or anything, so I developed the e-file using only a simulator. What's cool about Kindle is I can change it anytime for free. Its a whole new world of publication out there. A book is as dynamic as the prairie.

  2. Congratulations Mike. Gosh, you've worked so long and hard on this. What an accomplishment. I downloaded it to my kindle and am looking forward to reading it. You asked if anything looks wrong when it's opened on the Kindle. First of all, the book cover is spectacular and looks great on the Kindle. The maps don't work as well. They take up only about 1/3 of the page and are oriented the wrong way. When I turn the Kindle the map turns too so you have to read it tilting your head. not really the way you'd want it to be. Hopefully you can fix it. Would be great if the map filled more of the page. Love that the book is dedicated to Linda.
    Hope all is well. Love, Karen

    1. Thanks Karen. That is really helpful feedback. I already fixed one problem reported by a reader. So I'm going to figure out this one too. Of course you should have the great map reading experience.

  3. Hi again, I tried tapping the map page and it opened full screen. So that's good. It's just the orientation that could be adjusted. hope that helps. Karen

    1. I just uploaded a new version that I hope fixes the orientation problem. I think it takes them 12 hours or so before it actually appears on Amazon. I'm SO glad to hear about the tap-to-resize. This is a whole new world for me. I REALLY like this idea of an ever-improving book. Its more like music. You get to adapt each time. Thanks so much for your help.

  4. Wahoo! Congratulations, Mike and Linda. It's here. Welcome everyone to The Corridor. I'm looking forward to talking to people about the characters and story! :) Heather

  5. Congratulations Michael! I am anxious to read your labor of love.


    1. Thanks Barb! Hope you enjoy the read. And whatever your experience, I will enjoy hearing about it.