Today is a big landmark for me: as of today, The Happiness Project has been on the New York Times bestseller list for a year. Yes. One solid year! Thrilling.
I remember so clearly the moment when I had the idea to do a happiness project. I was on the 79th Street cross-town bus, and I looked out the window and thought, “What do I want from life anyway? I want to be happy.” I realized, though, that I didn’t spend any time thinking about whether I was happy, or how I could be happier. “I should have a happiness project!” I decided. I ran to the library the next day to get a big stack of books about happiness—and I had no notion of how much that single moment’s thought was going to shape my life, and bring me so much happiness.
I have to pause to say thanks and give gold stars to a few people. First, my agent, Christy Fletcher. With her infallible judgment, her searching creativity, and her relentlessly high standards, she has been my guide from the first page of my very first book proposal.
My editor, Gail Winston. So many books about happiness! So many “year of” books! But Gail was undaunted, and she took on the project, and did so much to improve it.
And of course, my family. They’ve benefited from my happiness project, but they also put up with a lot from me, and I appreciate that very much.
Most of all, here, I want to thank you, my dear readers. When I started this blog, I swore I’d do it for at least a month, but in my heart, I didn’t expect to keep it going much longer. Never have I been so happy to have been proven wrong.
This blog is a huge engine of happiness for me. I’ve learned new skills, I’ve met new people, I’ve gained an entirely new writing identity—and, most important, I’ve been able to engage with you, the readers, on the subject of happiness. The thoughtful comments and suggestions here show how deeply people have considered these issues, themselves.
I’ve heard from many readers about their own happiness projects, what they’ve tried, what has worked for them. To know that my happiness project has helped other people become happier…it is a very, very profound experience.
Readers, your enthusiasm and support have made it possible to reach this milestone, which is one of the high points of my life as a writer. The Happiness Project is my fifth book, so I know how rare and precious it is to connect with readers in this way. Thank you.