After years of emotional struggle and an exhausting schedule of writing, editing, and waiting, I finally got to a point with my book where it was available for public consumption. And fearing the worst kind of critique whilst simultaneously hoping for any kind of praise imagineable, I was cornered in quick succession by two different people who both wanted to discuss my book. In both cases, I drew in my breath and prepared for pretty much anything … and instead, I got this:
“The print’s small.”
Not exactly what I was expecting. Either time.
The good news about the statement is it’s such a small complaint as to almost register as being insignificant. “Oh you don’t have a problem with what I wrote? Thank God. Here’s a cookie.” The bad news is, well, the print’s small. People might have trouble reading it?
I don’t think this is necessarily the case, and I likewise believe this is a weird coincidence. What one person was trying to say was exactly that: Her eyes have trouble reading something so small (and no doubt age played a factor). But what I took from the other person was something else entirely. For her, the book was meant to be frivolous. A light, airy look at football. Nothing of “real” substance, you see. And this wasn’t a criticism so much as it was an incorrect assumption. My book was going to be short and sweet and there you go.
Well, it’s still pretty short. Just not as short as perhaps thought. And it’s got some meat to it, too. And this is a reality I should address as I go forward, as preconceived notions about Eyeblack Odyssey are going to be a challenge I see.
“This book is too silly.”
“Your book is about football, which is not my cup of tea.”
“I wear pajama pants out in public with regularity; your book is offensive to me.”
I take on some of this stuff here (and here too). But really, it’s interesting to me that I’m deathly afraid of someone ripping out my soul and stomping all over it, and instead I hear about font size.
Count your blessings, folks. I’m counting mine.