I write happy books set in happy places with guaranteed happy endings, so it might surprise you to hear that when I get good news, I don’t go to the happy place. My mind immediately drags me to the scary place. My subconscious is convinced the universe will exact unpleasant payment for any good fortune that comes my way. If I win $5 on a scratch-off lottery ticket, someone will back into my car. If I score a free dessert at my favorite restaurant, my toilet is going to back up.
Last week, my agent called and breathlessly said, “SUMMER NIGHTS is at #2 on the New York Times bestsellers list!”
SUMMER NIGHTS is the 8th book in my Fool’s Gold series of romance novels (www.foolsgoldca.com), and the second book in this year’s trilogy. Book 6 (ONLY HIS) hit #8 on the NYT. Book 7 (SUMMER DAYS) hit #5 on the NYT. And now SUMMER NIGHTS had hit #2. Each of these milestones was a personal best for me.
So when I got the news, did I bask? Er, no. I went from numb shock to, “It must be a mistake.” But then she emailed me the actual list, and there I was at number two. John Grisham, #1. Susan Mallery, #2.
See? So what did I do? I panicked, of course. I couldn’t help myself. This was so unbelievably wonderful, that I just knew I’d have to pay a high price! I saw danger around every corner! I took the stairs instead of the elevator to avoid getting trapped between the 4th and 5th floors of my condo building. I waited for my agent to call to tell me that the NYT was going to print a retraction on page 1, taking it all back.
But I’ll be honest – despite the panic roiling around in the pit of my stomach, I’m glad to be at number two, and I’m incredibly gratified by the outpouring of love from my readers. And I hope I’ll have another reason to panic on July 31 when ALL SUMMER LONG (Fool’s Gold book 9) is released.
I’m just not good at good news. Are you? What’s a great piece of news that you have received, and how did you react?