There's no getting around it: I've been feeling entitled. Little by little, it's crept up on me despite my initial utter lack of conviction about the book - which, by the way, I shall refrain from mentioning again, in the ridiculously outlandish hope that creating a false air of mystery around it will motivate you to rush out and order several dozen copies (one will do) in order to discover what it is that I'm trying to keep from you.
Where was I? Oh yes: entitlement. I'm guilty as charged, and I know how it started. As you may remember, I initially wrote my memoir as a kind of 'here I am' story to my children. Despite the fact that the potential audience has grown (to about seven billion), my family is unashamedly my target audience (I can hear literary agents stirring in their beds as that thought escapes into the ether). I would love it if a lot of people read the book, but I WANT my family to read it. However, as you can tell from my language, that hasn't quite happened yet.
To my delight, my son and his partner have both delved into it and emerged unscathed at the end of the experience. Both seem to have enjoyed it - and hearing that was an enormous emotional experience. My son, after all, now knows me better - and so much more completely than I ever knew my own father. That's a mighty win.
However...the rest of the family is yet to take the plunge, and that leaves me feeling troubled, and yes: entitled. I must admit to myself that there's an unspoken (but definitely felt) 'should' in my head about this. Perhaps it's because this was such a personal project and is about my life and how I relate to the people that I love and have loved, but on a fundamental level I feel a little let down that no other member of my family has taken the step - has cared enough (or is that too drama queen-ish of me?)- to acknowledge what was such a difficult (in part because it was my first effort, and in part because of the subject matter) project.
I'm disappointed that I feel this way. Nobody has an obligation to read the book - to think otherwise is irrational - but I wonder if other writers experience similar issues with their work? It's an interesting topic, but perhaps the priority should be getting my head around the truth: that I'm doing that thing which I hate to see in others: I'm assuming that I have a right to have my wishes granted.
I don't like this about myself...