So, just the other day I was thinking to myself about what an amazing year this has been, and that no matter what happened over the next months, I had essentially already won–and won BIG.
How many people finish writing an entire novel? Fewer than don’t. That’s an accomplishment in itself. Of those, how many go on to hook an agent with that novel? Far, far fewer. If I never got any farther than that, well, I’d still gotten pretty far.
How many people then actually sell that novel? The numbers are dropping, and yet again if I got that far, and no farther, I’d be doing pretty darn awesomely, thank you very much.
Wait. Award nominations? Now we’re talking an easily countable number, at least in a given year. And at the first nomination, I’m way beyond anything I ever thought was likely, or even possible. It doesn’t really matter if I win or not at that stage, because, I mean, seriously. That’s just spectacular, so unexpectedly and wonderfully so.
I’ve thought various stages of this at various times during the last year, and yes, I was thinking this again yesterday morning. Because, yes, the Clarke Award was going to be announced and I knew I wasn’t going to win. How could I? I knew what else was on the shortlist–five other other books, as it happens, truly fabulous books.
And I found that didn’t bother me at all. I mean, yes, it would have been completely awesome to have a trophy to put next to my (completely adorable) Golden Tentacle, sure. But seriously, the year I’ve been having. It’s been so amazing. And in fact, I was looking forward to congratulating whoever did win, because awesome folks being happy makes me happy. So I pulled up Twitter, so I would be ready to do that, and I sat there in my bathrobe chatting with people.
Um. You guys. Turns out, Ancillary Justice won the Clarke. Jenni Hill, my UK editor, accepted for me, and then called me to congratulate me but I’m afraid I was more or less incapable of speech.
I still mostly am. I mean, I can talk easily about what I did yesterday morning, or what I had for dinner last night.* But when I get to the part about winning the Clarke, I mostly just say Oh, my God a lot, with an occasional Holy fuck.
I guess I’ll get it processed eventually, but oh, my God. I won the freaking Clarke.
*Sweet-potato crusted salmon with grilled asparagus, some “gourmet” macaroni and cheese and kale chips off the 14yr old’s plate cause no way was he eating kale & there was a lot of the mac & cheese. It was all amazing.