The audience will meet me when the book comes out. It will be published through Text Publishing. I love Text publishing. It will be marketed. I will trudge and talk and appear at things and on things. If it does well I will have three months of this and then I will be dropped back into relative obscurity.
Still, this is a book about me. It is a book about my sex. My physical sex, the furious vagina that I have described in such intimate detail. You know the scent and the texture of it. You know that one labia is slightly larger than the other because of an early fall onto the box of a speaker. All this you know or you will know when you read the book. I will stand in front of you all at festivals, on television, if I am lucky, on radio. I will talk about fucking and being fucked. I will talk about the times that were hard to write about in the privacy of my rainforest retreat.
I am prepared for this, and yet there was that unsolicited comment on my blog post that I have deleted now. There was that other comment that greets me every time I look at my blogger account. There are unkind remarks that paint me as a slut, or an old boiler, or a piece of meat that might be feasted on by any passing bogan and his pit bull. I will have to stand up and soldier on through all that. Then, of course there are the bad reviews, so many of them and I would be better off not reading them, but of course I will. I am already hesitant about my own abilities. I read a bad book and I think I may be a bad writer. I listen to a podcast about bad apples and I think that I might be poisoning my workplace. I remember how one or the other of them said that I was unattractive or too playful to be loved and I believe every bad word, somewhere deep inside, a splinter worked in through thin skin and lodged somewhere like a clot travelling through my bloodstream, waiting for a small pathway in the brain before it will unseat me.
I am prepared for my audience to comment on my looks, my weight, my brashness, my craft and find me lacking and yet, I know that I am not so strong that I will remain unaffected by this. I have built a wall of people around me to protect me from them, Anthony, Christopher, Katherine, and Chris, with your new strong pillar of support I feel like I might be ready to stand my ground. Too late if I am not because I will be naked in front of the world. I am shovelling the cement of care around my base and I know that you will all stand by me.
Here in a new year, I nod towards the sure fort that I have chosen, take a deep breath, and I begin it.