#3 Author’s joy

I had the recent good fortune to spend a day with old friends. Most I hadn’t seen for five years. Both nature and the man-made world seemed to conspire against me (traffic, bad phone service, and rain, sleet, and hail throughout the football game). But it was joyful to reconnect.

And, yes, it felt encouraging to get support for my book, even from people who hadn’t (yet) read it. I don’t usually consider myself irrational (probably no surprise to Righteous Judgment readers), but there you go … emotions run their own course.

It feels odd to lead this posting with an inward view of happiness. On the rare occasions I’ve gotten philosophical about it, usually among the “Type A’s” from my prior career, I’d preach that happiness grounded solely in self-advancement or wealth couldn’t be the answer, because there were limits to what one could achieve for oneself, and there’d always be more that one hasn’t accumulated; that instead, one must also take joy from helping others, from making others happy, a virtually limitless opportunity.

So perhaps handing out advance copies of Righteous Judgment at my weekly poker game struck both chords with me.  Looking up from the final table (meaning eight players had already been knocked out) in the middle of our restaurant, I saw two friends who had sat down in a booth, across from each other, each absorbed reading the book—my book. I turned toward the front of the restaurant, and the waitress was taking her break, not gossiping in the kitchen, but at another empty table, reading it as well. Gives new meaning to “a picture’s worth a thousand words.” I know the effort of trying to perfect a thousand words (and 90,000), but that image of the first readers sitting there, enjoying my book—I guess we need a new expression, “author’s joy.”

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