Thursday, October 09, 2014
taking my digital temperature
I tend to be obsessed with taking my digital temperature. I often take it many times a day. And I can't seem to stop myself. No amount of willpower can prevent it once I yield to that fixation. It's not what you think. It's not a solipsistic medical obsession. It goes deeper than that. Taking my digital temp goes right to my soul. You think I am afraid of fever or variations in body temperature? No, that's not it at all. I told you, it's deeper than that. This solipsistic obsession is very modern, au courant. I go to CreateSpace, the self-publishing arm of Amazon, and check daily sales figures of my four self-published books. I allow myself to feel glum if nothing shows up or to feel cheerful, even elated, if I find a few hits, a few sales. I check similar data at KDP, Kindle Direct Publishing. I check sales of these same books in electronic versions, from around the globe. If I told you the highs and lows of these daily, even hourly numbers, you might find yourself rolling on the floor laughing. Or crying. (Don't we have Internet acronyms for these emotional outbursts?) But what of my own emotional outbursts, no, inbursts? What possesses me? What is this hunger? It cannot possibly be about money. The amount are laughably or cryably or pitiably minuscule. Is it approval or validation? What is this craving? What drives it? What emptiness am I trying to fill? What would constitute enough? And why would I want more after that? U2 sang, "I still haven't found what I'm looking for." I have to ponder the question before the question: why am I even looking?