As with most book lovers I have a tendency to shriek about the books I’m excited for and beg that I be granted them early. And usually I am so excited when I get accepted for or sent an ARC. But something happened recently that made me question whether getting a book early is really what I want when I scream that I want that far off book RIGHT NOW!
If you read my March Wrap Up you’ll know that I was lucky enough to get an eARC of my most anticipated book of the year, The Bride Test. I loved it and I’m going to have a review up soon, something strange happened when I found out I got early access to it, and I wanted to discuss it.
You see, finding out that I was able to read my most anticipated book of the year right then and there put me in a state of shock. I was freaking out. I was in disbelief. I felt a whole slew of emotions. And once I started untangling my emotions, I found that besides for my obvious joy, I was also disappointed?? At first I felt awful for feeling that way. I had wanted this book for so long, so how dare I feel disappointed! How dare I feel anything but pure joy! But as I thought about it some more I started to understand what had happened.
I think that I had made my peace with not ever getting my hands on the book until release day. And because of that I was counting down the days until May 7th, when I could get a finished copy of The Bride Test and squeal and shout in happiness. And then suddenly, I was no longer waiting for May 7th, and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I was upset not that I got the book, but more so that I no longer was able to anticipate the book all the way through May.
This obviously led to a lot of reflection, which in turn led to this post. I know that anticipation is sometimes seen as dangerous because it can make your expectations too high, and because it really can be frustrating to wait months to a year for a book that sounds perfect or a sequel in a series.
More than once I’ve been looking at anticipation from this perspective. I use my anticipation to build up the hype and I get disappointed. I’m in a slump and the only book I crave comes out in two months. I understand why anticipation gets a bad rap. But I’ve also gained a new appreciation for the wait. I will probably still yell and scream that I want books now, but not as soon as I hear they’re going to be published. I think I like the anticipation now. I think I want to have some time to anticipate a book before I’m granted it.
How do you feel about anticipation? Have you ever felt a bit upset that you could no longer wait for a book? Do you think anticipation is bad because of the expectations it causes?