Yeah, I have Christmas Tree Brain once again. Womb Man: How I Survived Growing Up in a Booby-Trapped World is in review at Createspace (CS). In 24 hours I can order a galley proof and get it on its way to me.
It was approved once before but then I noticed that the Chapter 12 heading appeared on the bottom of the last page of Chapter 11. And CS relocated the ISBN to the left-hand side of the back cover because we typed it into the right-hand side and there was no room for it there. (I forgot that CS adds the ISBN bar code and asked Lisa to add it.)
Christmas Tree Brain is what I call my brain when it’s really, really excited in the way that a child is excited waking up on Christmas morning and to find all of the packages under the tree that “Santa” left. It’s hard to describe my excitement in any other way that approximates the feeling.
I feel this way with every book I decide to publish. But I love everything about Womb Man: the title, the subtitle, and the effect I believe it will have on transgender discussions.
By contrast, I wasn’t expecting a huge reaction when I wrote and published Settle for Best: Satisfy the Winner You Were Born to Be. I had Christmas Tree Brain then, for sure, but I didn’t expect that the people who read it would embrace it and buy multiple copies for their friends, business associates and relatives who were unemployed, underemployed or struggling as entrepreneurs.
Talk about being surprised and tickled! THAT was a surprise! I didn’t expect Settle for Best to be a “pick me up” in the way it turned out to be… I thought it would be helpful,and instructive–but didn’t know it would end up being as encouraging to readers as it turned out to be. I wanted it to be uplifting, of course… but I was blown away by the enthusiastic response to it.
I’ll confess that I expect great things to come out of Womb Man. I would never have written it if I didn’t. It’s certainly a risky topic to tackle…
Is it going to elicit hate mail? Only from those who don’t bother to read it and who embrace automatic, knee-jerk reactions to transgenderism. (Far right religious fundamentalists, I’m looking at you!) It would take someone in their own families to admit to being transgender to get them to even consider living and letting live. (When far right religious nuts discover that a child of their own is atypical, too many of them toss them into the streets; others “come around” and reconfirm that their love for the person is triumphant and that it beats the tar out of hate and shunning six ways from Sunday.)
Here’s the thing. I never expected to become a vocal, visible advocate for transgenderism. It isn’t in my nature to want to stand out in any way other than as a competent, compelling writer. (“Writing is show business for shy people.”) But whenever I consider what my eventual legacy might be composed of, I want part of it to be “transparency”. When you interact with me, what you get is more than what you see–so don’t discount me!
Everyone wants to be celebrated, not just tolerated. Not in a marching brass band kind of way, but in a “Yes, I see you and yes I fully acknowledge and respect who you are” way. For far too long, it seems, only rich white Anglo Saxon males have been afforded the automatic level of respect and acclaim that others deserve, too. It’s time for that to fade into history.
There are amazing people everywhere you look. They’re black, brown, red, white, yellow, straight, gay, transgender and lots of things besides. I hope Womb Man removes the scales from people’s eyes so we can all get past the prurient attention that transgenderism currently elicits and focus on what really matters: philadelphia (brotherly love)!