Maybe the experience is best described by writing about what happened next. When the first proof copies arrived in the mail, there was spontaneous singing and dancing through the house. Everyone had a turn to admire the book. My four-year-old even gave the dog a turn to read it. (He liked it, by the way.) The smiles didn’t fade, even when major formatting errors were spotted.
That was a week ago, and the excitement hasn’t worn off. When the second package arrived with the errors corrected, we all admired it again. Then yesterday I did something that I had never done before. I sat down to read my book. I’ve read it hundreds of times, and had even read the bound copy when the proof arrived, but this time was different. This time, I was not reading for errors or edits. This time, I sat down to read my book for pleasure. It indeed was a pleasure.