Signing Things

I signed my book contract last week!  It was kind of surreal.  I sign my name all day long, but it’s usually just giving Mastercard permission to come take my firstborn child if I don’t pay 19% or 56% or who knows, maybe  83% interest on whatever I’m buying.   But a real contract with a real publisher! Yikes!!!
I’ve only signed a handful of important things in my life.  I guess my marriage certificate was probably fairly important.  The deed to my house.  Maybe my kids’ birth certificates, but after that, I’m drawing a blank.  Unless of course the waiver at that bouncy house place was really as crucial as they pretended it was, which I don’t believe for one second.  (And as if I’m not suing if I break my collarbone anyway…)
Here’s what it looks like.
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Looking at it, I realize:
1.        I have the signature of a 15-year old.  I want it to be messy and artsy and worldly, but it’s not.  You can read all the letters, and if I intentionally scribble in the middle it just looks like I had a mini seizure.  Note the second signature.
2.       My name is confusing.  Am I Hispanic?  I wish.  I only know four or five words in Spanish and they can all be found on the Taco Bell menu.   I just married well.  (Side note on the confusing—I had my first child in Miami and every single doctor or nurse coming through the delivery room door did so talking to me in Spanish.  I was ready to throw a cup of ice chips at the next person who said Senora Martinez, como esta?  As it turns out, me+pain=shocking intolerance.)
VIRTUOSITY’s tentative release date is for October 2011, which means I have about 13 months to get a cool signature, on the off chance I get asked to sign a book.  Maybe a tube of red lipstick would be a better idea and I can just kiss every book I see, whether I wrote it or not.  Wait, I just pictured myself getting kicked out of Barnes and Noble for making out with all the books.  Beautiful.
Speaking of signatures, I found this the other day.  It was stuffed into an old book.
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I can’t believe I’m posting this.  No, that’s not my maiden name—Wilson is the last name of a guy I really liked, and no, I’m not saying when.  Fine.  It was in COLLEGE, and I didn’t even date the guy!  We hung out for about a month one summer, and from that I extrapolated my new name, our wedding colors, the names of four children, and the decorating scheme for our house.   So again, WHY AM I POSTING THIS?  Because apparently, I have no shame.  And also, finding it slammed me back into my teenage years, which for a YA writer is a good.   I like to think I haven’t really matured much beyond 19 anyway, but occasionally I get a good reminder of the crazy optimism that I love about this age, which makes me want to go work on my next novel. 
Random and Unrelated Portion of This Post:
Who wants naked stick figures?  I know, you’re thinking I’m a liar.  In the manifesto (a few posts back) I said no nudity, but actually what I said was limited nudity.  I found this on the back of a shopping list while looking for my son’s social security number this week.  I thought, “Why is this shopping list from forever ago in my son’s file folder?” and I almost threw it out.  Then I saw it.
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His first stick figure.  He was the kid who would rather eat a crayon than put it to paper, so I remember being amazed when he actually did this.  And then I looked closer.  Are all the vital parts there?  Sort of.  A head, no arms, but 2 legs, and what’s that?  Oh yes.  Everything is accounted for.  The fundamental man.

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