It is done. Finished. Complete.
You have to have an idea of what you are going to do, but it should be a vague idea. Pablo Picasso
This book, WHERE, that has taken a year to create, I held it in my hands yesterday. The first copy out of the bindery. The first bound book.
I glanced through it.
"It's backwards," I told the pressman.
Collating stopped. The page was flipped. The process continued.
And now it's done.
Tomorrow we launch. Tomorrow we begin the process of publicizing and marketing and getting it out into the world.
I am pleased.
It looks fabulous. A work of art. A work of love.
For the past three months, it has been a journey through, into with words and photos and ideas and thoughts.
Yesterday, the sales rep from Sundog Printing asked me how we came up with the idea for the words.
"It was a case of constantly listening to intuition. To heeding the muse as she flowed through the process."
It started with an idea, a vague one, but an idea that seemed to have merit -- what if we take 50 words that represent our 50 years of service and the value we add to the community and then write something for each word -- invite people from the community to contribute.
I started writing out words. I asked staff to add to the words until the list grew and grew. 200 words. 220. 250. 265.
We must stop with the words. Start paring back. We got it to 100. We need photographs, a co-worker said. We've got clients in a photography club. We could ask Calgary photographers to submit a photo. Good idea, we agreed. And then, he was at a dinner party and he met two photographers and told them about the idea.
"We want to play too." And they joined in with their talents and gifts and whole heartedness.
And we kept going. Listening. Heeding. Moving through the process.
It felt effortless, even in those moments of working hard to meet deadlines and timelines and expectations.
It felt effortless. Fluid. Graceful.
I did find a typo though. Even after countless read throughs, countless people proofing, I found a typo.
I was reading a piece out loud for one of the authors. I had asked him if he would read his piece at the launch. He wasn't sure. He'd never actually read it after he'd written it. It was a letter he'd written to his father, just before he passed away. It was about his addiction.
A powerful. Provocative. Beautiful piece.
And he'd never read it, even to himself.
I offered to read it out loud to him.
Please do, he said.
And we sat in my office and I read and he cried. Sobbed.
Should I stop, I asked.
No. Keep reading.
and I did and when I finished he sat silently and then said. "It's good. Thank you."
My worst fear is that I'll cry, he said.
My worst fear was that there's a typo in the book, I told him. And there is. Right in the middle of your piece. I apolgoize and yet, I cannot change it. And even in the presence of my worst fear, the earth didn't open up and swallow me whole when I found it.
He's not going to let a few tears stop him. He's going to read his piece on Wednesday. He is a courageous man.
It's done. This book that I have nurtured into creation.
And I am pleased.
And I am grateful.