Book Release: Up in the Air(port Lounge)
Contributor
Written by
Alex Benkast
August 2017
Promoting
Contributor
Written by
Alex Benkast
August 2017
Promoting

I originally wrote my first novel, Lumiana, between October and December 2013, fresh out of college trying to live it up in California's Bay Area. As luck would have it, my first boss was a veteran author, one of the coolest people to ever walk the earth, and he gifted me with the best advice to get me started: Sit down and write something—it doesn't have to be good, it's okay if it sucks, you can always go back and edit it later—just get into the habit of writing something every day. And damn, did it suck (yeah, sure, boss, I can write a novel in English. I didn't learn English until fifth grade, although my mom claims my first word was "buggy").
What to do with a crappy 130,000-word draft? Burn it or edit the shit out of it. I think the published version is probably the 150th draft at this point. I loved every minute of it. I put all my savings into working with a professional editor and learned A TON—my personal Masters degree in Writing, if you will. By the end of 2015, my manuscript was finally in publishing shape. Why did it take me another year to publish it?

Well. Book Baby vs. Human Baby. Human baby wins, because those are demanding, and they come with actual shit. A million diapers and sleepless nights later, I slowly morphed back into my pre-baby persona, and that part of me longs to be a professional author. Ready to publish? Not quite. I'm a chicken, hear me cluck. On March 7th 2017, the much-needed kick in the butt came in form of my greatest fear: a transatlantic flight. What if the plane crashes and I end up dying without ever publishing anything? (Totally realistic, I know.) So, while we were having breakfast in the airport lounge, I submitted my manuscript and cover art to Amazon. A few hours and a tiny bottle of champagne later, I'm an indie author. Now if only I can find the time to work on marketing... My little bundle of poop just turned one, so fingers crossed!

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