So I submitted my manuscript. Just like that, with the push of a button, it was done. Three months of late nights and early mornings, of weekends spent at the computer, of exhaustion and stress, over, just like that. I expected more fanfare, I guess. Like maybe a little unicorn should have pranced across my screen singing, “You did it! You did it!”

There are still editor’s queries to answer, and licensing agreements to collect, but the biggest part is over. Looking back on the experience, there were definite good things and bad things. The stress was unbearable. Having a full-time job while writing a book in three months is just NOT a feasible plan. I needed more time… at the end of every day, I felt like crying and screaming out, “I just need more time today!”

But experiencing all those restaurants, meeting all those chefs and owners and cooks and waitstaff, and tasting all that food was wonderful. Now there are a zillion MORE places I love in Austin, which makes choosing a restaurant for dinner infinitely harder.

That’s the other thing – I get to CHOOSE which restaurant I want to go to now. I don’t have to try a new place at every meal. If I want to go to FINO every week, that’s okay! If I want to order the same dish every time, that’s okay! Research is over! I can eat at my old favorite places! I can order just one thing! Crazy talk. Seriously.

Tonight for dinner we talked about going out for sushi. But in the end, I just wanted to stay home. So I had a toasted English muffin topped with fried eggs and avocado. For dinner. At home. It was perfection.

I just can’t believe it’s done. My worries have switched from “What if I don’t finish?” to “What if people don’t like it?” But it’s out of my hands now. I did my very best in the short amount of time I was given. And now I can go back to life.

Although the book took up so much of my daily life that I’m not quite sure what to do with myself now. What was I doing before this all started? I think I was working on my photography skills. I was learning French. I was watching movies and doing crossword puzzles.

So tonight, after my fried eggs and avocado, we sat on the couch and watched Sherlock Holmes. And then we talked, and I whined about life for a while, and then I got out my favorite book ever: The Kitchen Diaries by Nigel Slater. And life began again.

20 responses to “Done.”

  1. …I’m not sure what this says about the book; was it enjoyable for you to write? Would you do this again in the future? It’s certainly a reflective time period for you… and I hope that life gets much more awesome. 🙂

    1. Hm, those are deep questions! I would say that parts of it were enjoyable. I would write again, but not under the same time constraints and circumstances. And you’re right, it’s been very reflective. I’m figuring out all kinds of things about myself. 🙂

  2. Mija,
    I hope you get some well-deserved time off now and rest your mind and body….I knew you could do it and am extremely proud of you for it. Love Dad

    1. Thanks, Daddy! I love you so much.

  3. I am so happy for you! You deserve some down time. I say for the next couple of days you cook your favorite dinners, bake a cookie or two (jumbo chocolate chips ones), get in your jammies early and just kick it for a while. Maybe get a massage one day…mmmm….heaven! Recharge. I say we go back to wimberley and just walk that whole little town. Eat nothing but Bakery goods and junk food! I promise I won’t bring a watch! Haha!! I don’t have one!! Love you!

    1. Thank you, sis! I think I will bake tonight… I’m thinking pumpkin cake with honey cream cheese frosting. A massage sounds PERFECT. And we should totally do Wimberley again! Come on over! Also, I’m glad you’re able to joke about the watch. 😉

  4. congratulations! do enjoy all those moments of less stress at home. canot wait to see + hear all about the new book. you should be really proud of yourself. it’s quite a feat + labor of love, i’m certain!

    p.s. that book is SOOOOOO on my “wish” list. i’ve been such a book junkie lately that i’m on restriction right now. ; )

    1. Thank you! I appreciate your support so much. And when you’re off book restriction, definitely get The Kitchen Diaries! It’s lovely just to read in bed at night, it’s lovely to cook from, it’s lovely to daydream about. It’s my favorite. 🙂

  5. Lovely post, I feel happy – and relieved – for you 🙂
    Welcome back to your beautiful life!

    1. Thanks so much, Flavia! I feel happy, too.

  6. Yay! So so so so so happy for you. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy, and I am sure I won’t be the only one 🙂

    1. Thank you! It will be fun to hear whether you find some new favorites from the book. 🙂

  7. Oh Congrats Congrats! You did something so amazing. I’m proud of you. And now I can’t wait to see the book for myself.

    1. Thank you, Connie! That means a lot.

  8. Congratulations!!!! What an amazing accomplishment! 🙂

  9. Late to the party.. but Yay! That sounds awesome. Now take a deep breath and let it go..

    1. Yes, time to let go. 🙂

  10. Congratulations Crystal! We can’t wait for it to hit the shelves!!

    Annie & Brian

    1. Thank you guys so much! 🙂

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