I am, constitutionally, a weed. A sad ‘people-pleaser’. A gal who cain’t say no and is always overly optimistic. Consequently, at great cost to my writing time and energy, I tend to get enmeshed in endless proof-reading for friends, mentoring other friends and, of late, writing a story based on a man’s sketchy recollections of bedtime tales his mother told him almost 70 years ago.
It was great fun to write, I should say, knitting the fragments together and extending it all into a magical adventure, but there was a HUGE snag. He knows nothing about the publishing world and has not even read any children’s literature – or anything about it – since he was a child himself, but he is convinced that the book will be a best-seller and Walt Disney would be bound to want it for a film and we’d end up being millionaires. I had several increasingly firm attempts to tell him how it really is in the publishing world, none of which he listened to.
I have sent the finished version to an agent. We haven’t heard anything yet, of course. It’s a long shot anyway. Meantime, he went ahead and commissioned an artist to illustrate it, at huge expense, in spite of my saying until I was blue in the face that it doesn’t work like that. Finally, I had to make it absolutely clear that writing the words was the beginning and end of my involvement (we do have a Memorandum of Agreement which says I’m not putting any money in) because I couldn’t bear the nonsense any more. He is very angry and has cut communication – for which relief, much thanks. It’s been exhausting.