Why I’m Not Sad Five People Read My Second Book

On the value of a “bridge” book

Felicia C. Sullivan
Master Writing Mechanics
6 min readSep 22, 2021

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I liken the performance of my second book to getting weighed at the doctor’s office. Standing there, eyes pressed shut I’d shout, I don’t want to see, I don’t want to know, but I do know this — the number is never great. Paling in comparison to my impressive debut, which was published when I was young, naive, and filled with possibility. When all I wanted was a second book published by Knopf, featured in The New Yorker, and made into a movie that didn’t star Tori Spelling.

Now, I’m all gravely voice and scotch in wine glasses. Now, I know better.

Often, I read articles about writers trying to find their voice and the frustration that invariably ensues when they’re not raking in millions after six months, possibly one or two years, which causes me to laugh uncomfortably loud because it took me nearly two decades to find my verve, style, and point-of-view. Two decades of reading, diagraming stories, workshops with famous and not-so-famous authors, and an MFA program whose loans I’ll likely be repaying from the casket. A solid ten years publishing professionally, including a first book, and still I didn’t feel comfortable shouting because I didn’t have a voice yet.

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Felicia C. Sullivan
Master Writing Mechanics

Marketing Exec/Author. I build brands & tell stories. Hire me: t.ly/bEnd7 My Substack: https://feliciacsullivan.substack.com/ Brand & Content eBooks: t.ly/ZP5v