I will soon achieve the goal of publishing my first book, entitled, “Moving Zeal: A psychological study examining the decluttering and de-hoarding process as a means of self-discovery.” This ebook, with a possible limited print run, will be an anthology of the best essays originally published on this website. Through this moving process, I’ve learned a lot about myself and my attachment to materialism, and so the book’s intention is to share that learning process.
The plan is divided into three main parts:
First, I’ll continue writing essays like I have been until I move completely, and maybe for a few weeks after to make sure I catch up on any material I thought about writing. Once I get settled into my next place, I’ll have a different perspective, so I’ll need to capture the sensation of going from a compulsive hoarder of over seven years, spread out over two bedrooms and a basement, before these memories evaporate. If I would have had this book, I would have been able to determine for myself whether I wanted all the stuff I’d bought at thrift stores or acquired for cheap.
That will probably go on into early April.
Second, I’ll compile the best essays of the bunch. I’ve written 71 essays so far in this series, and I estimate I’ll have at least 100 when I’m done. Depending on the quality of each, I may end up including all of them, or the highlights. My friend and editor, J.D., of my more professional essays, will help me edit our favorites – or all of them. The essays on this website have typically just been first draft essays written in anywhere between an intense 20 minutes to a casual hour, so we’ll both go through and fight over word choice and the weight of each sentence so when the essay goes to publication, it will be the best possible essay it can be, and I may even find some additional readers to provide additional criticism. I’ll also invite some guest writers, like J.D., to write about their perspectives of hoarding to bring in a more well-balanced perspective on the subject.
This may happen into May or June.
Third, we’ll figure out the publishing and marketing. J.D. mocked up a few book covers based around some photos I’ve sent him of my move progress. Once I’m moved, I’ll go through some of the earliest photographs showing my hoarding at its peak absurdity. J.D. has already started to work on some of the publishing and marketing components, so by the time we get to this part, we’ll have a good idea on how to do this.
Finally, the profits.
Let’s say this ebook brings in some attention and sells. The price point probably won’t be over two dollars or some amount that seems reasonably accessible. Then I intend to turn Better Zombie into an ebook publishing company, with all the legalities squared away, and we’ll start publishing more books.
If the book doesn’t sell… it was an experiment.
|Sources: My personal experiences.|
|Inspirations: Too many, but mainly, seeing some great book covers J.D. mocked up made me realize that I wanted to summarize this project idea in full. I think speculative projects could fail when you don’t have a working, viable plan. By the time this article publishes, we’ll have already done a month’s worth of project work to make this happen.|
|Related: Other Moving Zeal essays.|
|Photo: I showed J.D. some photos from a recent storage run, where I packed my car full of boxes, and he mocked together some six book covers. I liked this one with my trunk loaded slam full of boxed books.|
|Written On: January 25th [30 minutes]|
|Last Edited: First draft; final draft.|