Those of us who dream about writing books, have written a book, or have published a book, share a common dream. Whether we shout if from the rooftops or fear even writing it in a personal journal, the dream is still there. And as makers of books, we don't really talk about it much.
The dream looks different for everyone. For some it's lavish. For others it's more of a feeling than something tangible. it can be private or involve a dozen other people. It's still the same dream.
You might think the dream is different once you've got your first book out, but it doesn't. The dream might alter course a bit. Sharpen it's focus. But it never really changes. The same dream keeps on pushing us all.
So what is the dream?
It's what our lives will look like as authors.
If you've never published, your dream probably looks a bit more scattered. Everything from walking into a bookstore and seeing your baby on the shelf to chatting with Oprah about how the world has been changed by your words. I used to daydream about walking the red carpet at the movie premier of my book adaptation. Used to. Ha. Still do.
If you've got a book or two out there in the world, you might have narrowed in a bit. Maybe you've got a dream to hit a particular list or get a deal from a particular publishing house. Perhaps you're eyeballing translation rights or a feature table at BEA. Your dream might have a different filter, but it's the same dream.
What about the big names, you ask. Those who already have their movie deals and keynote speaker spots? You think they don't have dreams. They still dream about what their life will look like after the next book. They still have goals. Otherwise, they wouldn't put out more books. Oh, they would probably still write. It's hard to quit once you've started. But if they didn't have dreams they would type the end and then file their novel away to never see the light of day.
Maybe when you get to a certain point, your dreams get even tighter. Maybe James Patterson dreams about being about to write a book all by himself, back when he wasn't the poster child for mega authors. Perhaps John Grisham wants to write a picture book. I bet George RR Martin wants to go to ComicCon without a million people asking him when the next book is going to come out.
We all have dreams of what our lives will be like as authors. As we stumble around down the publishing path, the details of our dreams change a bit. But we never stop dreaming about what being an author will be like tomorrow.