It’s just four months until So Lucky publication (May 15). Apart from Kelley (and my agent, editor, lawyer, copyeditor and other book production people at Farrar, Straus and Giroux), only half a dozen people have read it. This is weird. Usually at this stage of a book’s publication cycle hundreds of people have read an ARC, a number have given me endorsements, and I have a real sense of the book’s eventual reception.
The publisher seems confident that everything’s going to plan but for me it feels scarily behind schedule.
Happily, I’ve just got my first official blurbs:
Nicola Griffith’s So Lucky is compelling reading, a tour de force of the onset of disability. This is the first novel I have read that describes an experience of disability from Day One with a relentlessness that can parallel disability itself. It is intense, sad, and dramatic, combining mystery, romance, terror (internal and external), and hope. Just like life itself.
Steven E. Brown
Co-Founder: Institute on Disability Culture
In Nicola Griffith’s So Lucky, Mara is a vibrant, active, social justice minded woman stalked by a phantom. The phantom threatens her work, her relationships—nothing less than her identity. This angry, funny, cleverly-written piece about the onset of disability in a world that values fitness above all ushers in a new wave of disability story. Or let’s hope so.
Playwright, and author of Good Kings, Bad Kings
I’m hoping to have more official blurbs soon, and a cover. (I really want my cover!)
Meanwhile, unofficial comments from early readers have been encouraging. The most common descriptors so far include:
- read-it-in-one-sitting/page-turning (x 4)
- fury/furious/angry (x 4)
- intense (x 3)
- powerful (x 3)
- enthralled/enthralling (x 2)
- sad (x 2)
- terror/terrified (x 2).
So I am cautiously optimistic. (Hey, “Intense, terrifying, funny, tour de force page-turner that ushers in a new era” would certainly make me pick up a book…) I think I’m achieving at least one of my aims: for So Lucky to be the kind of read that grabs you by the scruff of the neck and won’t let go until it spits out your re-shaped bones. I might also be hitting another goal: to really give the reader an idea of what it’s like to find yourself suddenly treated as less because you’re a cripple—but to engage and intrigue said reader rather than overwhelm them.
Early opinion on whether the monster is real or metaphorical is evenly divided. Oh, yes, I most definitely have thoughts on that, but I’ll keep them to myself a bit longer.