Worse than Breeding Elephants.

As I remember the joke (but I’m going back at least 35 years with this one, and I’ve slept a few nights since then), it goes something like this:

“Getting anything done around here is like breeding elephants: It takes place at a high level, it’s accompanied by a lot of roaring and screaming, and it takes a year to get any results.”

Well, that’s nothing, compared with birthing a book.

I feel like Rex Harrison’s Pope yelling at Charlton Heston’s Michelangelo up in the scaffolding under the Sistine Chapel ceiling, in the motion picture adaptation of Irving Stone’s The Agony and the Ecstasy:

When will you be finished?”

“When I’m done!”

800px-God2-Sistine_ChapelBut even painting the Sistine Chapel frescoes took Michelangelo only three years. It’s been more than four years since I first put pencil to paper, more than thirteen months since the last plot hole closed, four months since the first paperback edition was printed, two months since the large print, compact and E-book versions came out – and I’m still not done with Irish Firebrands.

The E-book formatting still needs tweaking to get it to display correctly, I’m tearing apart the text to teach three different E-voices how to read it out loud for the audible version, the galley proof of the new illustrated edition arrived today and I’m roaring and screaming over the new formatting glitches that somehow creep into it with every new version. Not only that, but also somewhere in the dark crypts of my cortex my psyche conceived a vision of the changes that need to be made for a hardback version….

When can I sit down with my own book and just read it for enjoyment?

When it’s finished!

When will it be finished?

When it’s done!

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