Friday, February 5, 2010

Addendum to DSM V

At about midnight last night, I was trolling the web and looked at Brian Malloy's website.  He has a great page about the emotional roller coaster of the debut novelists first year of publishing.  Reading that plus knowing a few debut novelists has helped me decide that the DSM V should identify a new psychological disorder:   Debut Bookitits.

Symptoms Include:

1) Inordinate amounts of non-localized stress.

2) Repetitive Stress Injuries from googling one's own name.

3) Extreme Solipism that can result in the afflicted getting distracted during conversations and saying, "So, have you bought a copy of my book yet?  It's coming out soon.  You can pre-order, you know?"

4) Review Obsession: May include memorizing reviews, knowing the dates that LSJ and Kirkus issue their reviews, checking multiple times per day when the reviews are delayed, reading all the reviews in the issue the afflicted's comes out in and ranking them.

5) Daily checking of Amazon Sales Rank, even though the afflicted knows that Amazon is only one vendor.

6) Oscillating between extremes:  Everyone HATES my book to everyone LOVES my book.  This can be in rapid cycle or extended cycles.  And can be experienced even before the book is released.

Treatment Recommendations

See full size image
Talk about yourself.  It's better for the afflicted to get out of their own solipsism as soon as possible and the afflicted are too far gone to ask how you're doing, remember that you might be having a life of your own, much less thoughts of your own that are not related to her book.

Do not give the afflicted caffeine.  She is probably up all night trolling the internet already.


I don't know.... What do you think?  Is there hope?

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