Thursday, January 21, 2010


So I think I'm starting to come to terms with the fact that the title on my book will not be my first choice, nor will it likely be my second or third or even fourth choice. I understand that there is such thing as people who are in charge of sales and marketing, and that it obviously behooves me (whether the choice is mine or not) to cede such decisions that have to do with sales and marketing to the experts. I also understand that the point of book publishing is to sell books, not just to write books in some hermetic bunker like J.D. Salinger is rumored to and stash the manuscripts (each increasingly more obscure and inscrutable than the last--did you read "Hapworth 16, 1924"?) in some safe deposit box somewhere in Cornish, New Hampshire. It is an honor and a priveledge to know that my book is going to be published soon--actually published, and distributed, like, in bookstores--and that regardless of what the title is, it doesn't change the words or story inside.

However, I will also say that knowing that someone else is going to be putting the title on your book feels not unlike letting someone else name your baby. "What do you mean you think he looks like a 'David'? He looks nothing like a 'David'! Where the hell did you come up with the name 'David' anyway? DON'T YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT BABIES?"

Well, anyway. The lessons of life, learned during medical training through widely generalizable, as as follows. Forget your ego. Play ball. What will be, will be. To do be able to do this kind of work is an honor. So there you are.

I am glad everyone is liking the new comics, by the way. I will keep running a panel a day, with the complete, six-panel version of this week's comic, How to Annoy a Resident, to be posted on Sunday.


  1. An EM Res8:54 PM

    Hey, the comments are back!
    I can't wait until the book comes out. So excited. Seriously!
    Sad there won't be any comics, though. Stupid editors. I agree with the person who said they'd be good at the start of each chapter.

  2. love the comics!
    not loving the suggested titles so far. please do not let it be "i'm here to help".
    otherwise, i will re-cover my copy of the book like we had to do with loaned textbooks in high school. (ooh, i can get an all artsy-crafty and cover it with printed scutmonkey comics!)

    also, sorry, but the OCD in me has to point out that "privilege" was misspelled.

  3. Anonymous10:30 PM

    Hells to the yeah sistah!! :)

    By the way, I WILL BUY YOUR BOOK!!!

  4. To reiterate what "Anonymous" said-- we're all going to buy your book anyway, Chiquita. And tell our friends. And they'll buy your book. Even if you name it "Stories About Poop". Love the comics!

  5. So, what's the title? Or are we going to be kept in suspense???

  6. I like "stories about poop"!

  7. Anonymous11:44 AM

    Scutmonkey + comics has kept us all coming back for years. Just sayin'

  8. Anonymous12:59 PM

    Really excited for your book! Like the others, I'll be buying it no matter what it's called! =)

  9. Anonymous3:56 PM

    Yup, I'm also definitely buying the book and recommending it to everyone! I'm soooo excited for it to finally be released!

  10. Anonymous4:29 PM

    Are you going on a book tour?

  11. Oh yeah, *not* "I'm Here to Help." That sounds too much like "Here if You Need Me", which is a terrific memoir by a woman who goes to seminary after her husband is killed in a car crash and her subsequent work as a chaplain for the Maine Search and Rescue. It's a lot funnier and more offbeat than you might expect.

    But yeah, can't wait to read it, no matter the title.

  12. Wellesley '128:16 PM

    If not a national book tour, I vote that we at least lure you back to Wellesley to share your wisdom

  13. Maybe Scutmonkey can be in the subtitle somewhere? A good "wink wink" to those of us who are docs (and who may not familiar with your blog - poor saps).