Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Of Family Matters

It's been a busy month on the in-law side of things. First an Uncle passed, then my mother-in-law's best friend, followed shortly by my mother-in-law and then a "dog-in-law". (Hubby's Aunt's Goldie). Lots and lots to deal with none of it much too happy.

Due to this my characters have been uncharacteristically quiet of late. They're still there, ready to cause chaos in my head at a moment's notice, but they seem to understand I need time to deal with things and won't have much time to write yet. Or perhaps they know about the impending layoffs and are waiting to pounce once I'm on the unemployment line. Who knows? They do have minds of their own; which I find utterly fascinating.

Then today, I get told about a dinner table discussion about some responses I had to things my nephew's posted on a social media site. Jess had a bit of a hissy fit, not a long one, but a rant that would make a sailor blush during this conversation. (Granted, she's right, I haven't sat down to dinner with these people in at least 5 years). They aren't children either, they're both over 18. It's funny (in an odd way) that they even complained about it. First off, isn't the rule of thumb don't post anything on the internet that you don't want people to see? And second rule of thumb, if you can't take the heat of a response that you don't agree with, don't post stuff to the internet? Or perhaps I'm just showing my age as I've been on the "Internet" since back in the old ARPANET and FLASH days.

Anyway, it got me to thinking about how odd my family can truly be and how I SO don't fit their "expectations" of who I should be at all. Which may explain why my sister has now lost 5 copies of my book that she's supposed to be editing.

Which, in turn, brings me to the family I have built for myself, a.k.a. "The Family". It's an eclectic mix of very fun, wonderful, loving and accepting people. We don't have to see each other often to know we care about each other or to know what's going on in each other's lives. We treasure the time we have together and have great fun when we are together. And these are the people who step forward to help out on a moment's notice when tragedy hits and I unexpectedly need help in any number of ways. There are no expectations, no demands, just simple offers of assistance. And I happily do the same for them.

What does all of this have to with writing? Well, I've given up on asking my family for an honest evaluation of my writing. Instead I'm going to The Family to ask people for opinions, criticism, and input on my book. And I'm hoping to gain more insight from a new writer's group (well, new to me anyway) from people that aren't "family" and will not hesitate to give an honest opinion. Which in turn means this entire process is going to take a lot longer and I will hopefully learn a TON about writing, whether it be for pleasure or profit.

At any rate, I'm sure Jess will jump in at some point, demanding attention and kicking my virtual butt to get back to work on her storyline. And I really can't wait I do have such fun jumping into her world.