No Foolin’

I am not big on April Fool’s Day. In general, I agee wholeheartedly with something Mani wrote last night: “Not a fan of any April Fool’s day pranks that scare, humiliate, or sadden.”

Today though, as I stopped in town for coffee on my Monday morning commute and chatted with my favorite gay barista at Starbucks, I wondered what fun thing I could post that would not do any of those things–no harm done, no distress or confusion provoked.

So I posted something completely untrue–that turned out to elicit more positive responses than I ever imagined:

CaptureI added “reeling” after the fact. You know, for emphasis. I think that may have been the clincher; rather than writing “April Fools!” at the end of the update, I let it stand up and speak for itself.

For a moment, I paused to imagine how I might actually feel if that had happened. “Reeling” came to mind so clearly, I could practically taste it.

But I am a woman of conscience, and within two comments and a few “likes,” I couldn’t take it. It didn’t feel right. So I wrote a comment saying It felt too much like lying and was actually an April Fool’s joke. I even shared a second status update saying I didn’t feel good about fooling anyone–about anything.

No matter.

The congratulations and excitement continued to pour in all day, not only from my usual suspects but from dozens of folks I rarely hear from online. By the time I got home from a long day at work around 8:00pm, nearly 100 Facebook friends had “liked” my fake news.

The joke’s on me. I didn’t like feeling like I’d pulled on over on anyone, but despite the fact that all day I kept repeating that it was a joke, the thing had taken on a little life of its own. It was stunning to me how many people kept commenting despite my continued efforts to say it wasn’t real.

I hadn’t stopped to think for a moment that this April Fool’s joke would be… believable. And the more I saw that it was, the more I wondered if I’d subconsciously done that “create your own reality” thing by writing this down.

Comments like these sparked something in me: How freakin’ cool would it be if I actually DID get an email from someone at Knopf?

Who says you are fooling…perhaps you are just ahead of the curve.

Oh well–I’m still willing on your momentum…

See it and it will come…

Most of us were deceived because we realize your talent, so it would make sense that a publisher would too!

Knopf or not, YOU ROCK!!

Unsurprising that we all thought, “Well, of course Knopf wants her book.”

It’s absolutely believable! I didn’t question it for a second.

Wow! For a moment I was thrilled for you!

Not an april 1 joke! This is awesome, but not unexpected news..❤

JENA rocks!! Knopf should be knocking at your door!

This really should NOT be a joke; it should happen. It COULD happen. Why not??

What if what you called an April Fool’s joke became a prophecy??? Who would be laughing then?????

And notice how many people didn’t think it was a joke??? We certainly think you are worthy of such recognition.

Make the joke into a reality babeee, cuz you got it!

Rather than sitting around and wishing and waiting, I printed out a copy of my new manuscript and mailed it off to a friend who works at a major publishing house.

Then I emailed the pdf to three other writer friends to ask if they’d like to have a peek at it, not to see if they could connect me with their agents or editors so much as to share, to put it out there, to see what happens. (It’s like a colleague told a group of 25 graduating Hampshire students at a workshop we co-led tonight: “Ask for a job, and you’ll get advice. Ask for advice, and you’ll get a job.”)

I happen to dig the self-publishing process. I could tinker with fonts and formatting and section breaks and revisions and images and line breaks all day and never once get bored.

That said, would I welcome that email, that opportunity to connect with a wider audience? Hell yeah.

On any other day, your post is a powerful visualization & intention, aided by many supportive friends. Keep it!

Reeling indeed. With clarity. With purpose. With hope and intention–and with tremendous appreciation to all of you who were so happy for me and my pretend news. Thank you for believing in my writing–and forgiving my attempt at a joke.

As I responded to one good friend from Burlington: From your mouth to Knopf’s ears.

3 thoughts on “No Foolin’


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