This is not about sticking with it until you get a contract, get your book out there for everyone to read. Instead, it’s about continuing on when something devastating happens.
I happen to be an optimist, one who generally looks at the bright side which, considering the pitfalls of the publishing industry, is a plus. Right now, though, that outlook is being tested to its limits. I just found out today that I have what the doctor called “a cousin of macro degeneration.” Now that several hours have passed, I believe he was simply trying to let me down gently. He did say that it’s something that might go away, and I suppose he meant if he was wrong about the diagnosis.
Reading is my life. I cannot imagine getting along without it. I do know that a person with this disease does not go completely blind, but that the reading ability is compromised. Being a worrywart (now how does that match with optimism), I know it’ll be on my mind until next Thursday when I see the specialist. In the meantime, I’m making plans just in case.
Because I have so many books inside me that are demanding expression, I will seek out ways to cope. For now, I can read quite well on my Nook because I can make the print big—I read with my good eye which underwent cataract surgery a year and a half ago—and do quite well, though it’s uncomfortable reading with only one eye. It could be worse. Would you believe that several weeks ago I was complaining that I couldn’t read small print without my glasses like I used to? The right eye surgery was completely successful, but made me like most other seniors, needing a magnifier for small print.
With that in mind, I will look into the possibility of getting a lighted magnifier that would work with more than one line at a time. I don’t know if that’s something available right now, but if it isn’t, I’ll move heaven and earth to solve it. I may end up writing slower than before, and doing less reading of paperbacks, but it’s doable.
Last, but definitely not least, I will pray and ask for prayers. I know it works. Years and years ago, I was completely losing my hearing. At the time, I was majoring in voice (opera) at NorthwesternUniversity’s School of Music. And got a message from my doctor, who was an Italian opera loving physician and surgeon. He set me up with a specialist who had just perfected a new operation. He operated, took out the stapes bone (the vibrating one) and replaced it with plastic. I received completely normal hearing, still have it, and will never forget what he said at our last visit. “The reason you now have normal hearing is because the intense vibration from the singing kept the nerve alive.” I know I can’t count on a miracle, but maybe, somehow or other, I can make my own. One way or another, I will keep on writing.
Joan K. Maze
Writing as J. K. Maze