Catching Butterflies: Why Sharing My Work is Like A First Kiss

Being married to the right person is fantastic.  Being in a healthy long term relationship with someone whom I can communicate any thought, no matter how bizarre, trashy, intimate, awkward or vile is, without question, one of the best pleasures in life.  The one downside to this extreme and fulfilled intimacy, however, is the lack of nervous butterflies. 

It's the feeling of a first kiss about to happen.  It's the feeling of confessing your love and waiting for the reply. It's the feeling of sharing an intimate secret and waiting to see if one is shared in return.

Watch out butterfly, that flower is a tease. He'll break your heart for sure.

It's the epitome of excited potential:  The horror of not knowing what will happen next, but knowing that in a best case scenario, things could turn out to be truly amazing.

The longer you live life, especially with the same person, the harder it is to feel that scary potential.  My wife can still surprise and amaze me, of course, but I know that no matter what, she's safe.

I recently finished writing a novel, and have started showing it to people in preparation for all the stuff that goes into releasing a final polished product (editing, cover art, all that).  That means, people are reading my work.  It's a wonderful time in the process, because it gives me the exact same stomach butterflies that are so difficult to truly recapture in adult life. 

Will they like it?  How will they react?  Will they want more? Revealing a large project like a novel is particularly butterfly-inducing.  This isn't a short story I wrote on a Saturday afternoon.  It represents months of work and years of floating ideas, now complete.  It's not a pencil sketch, it's a marble statue.  It's saying, "I could have created anything at all, but I put every bit of energy for months into creating this."   Then, "What do you think?"

I couldn't be more excited to have this book out soon.  Initial responses have been great.   There's still the final polish to iron out (cover art, formatting, copyright, etc.) but the story  is finished.  The rest is just business. 

Sharing the story is what gives me butterflies.