"If you write FOR a particular market or FOR a particular editor you will often miss the mark. But if you write because your fingers have danced across the keyboard, because a character has tapped you on the shoulder, because a story has settled in your heart, then even if you never sell it you have done the work you were meant to do. And sometime, dear readers, real magic happens." Jane Yolen

2/22/11

Growing Up

Here he is - almost two
In five days, my baby boy will be reaching a milestone. I'm not sure I'm ready for it. He, however, has no qualms of any sort.

The signs, of course, have been there for weeks, if not months. Maybe even years. The attitude. The independence. His interest in (gasp!) girls. The changing of his tastes. His clothes shrinking (or something like that!). But I wasn't ready to admit it.

But now I'm doing it in public. My son will be entering "double digits" on Sunday. Yup. TEN YEARS OLD.

It's amazing the changes I've seen in him - even in the past year. He's maturing. Learning from his mistakes. Testing the waters. Driving us bananas in whole new ways (love ya, buddy!). Turning more and more into the man God wants him to be.

And the more I think about it, the more I realize my writing is "growing up" too. At least, I hope it is. It's maturing--dropping those adjectives and adverbs and adding the strong verbs instead. Deepening point of view.

I'm learning from my past mistakes--catching those words I use too often and finding better ones. Making my hints and backstory more subtle. Showing more than telling.

And, yes, I'm driving myself (and those around me) bananas in whole new ways - taking on more projects. Finding new ways to get my thoughts down when I should be doing other things (ummm - like driving?). Yapping away about my favorite character or newest story idea to folks who couldn't care less.

And through this process, at least I hope, I'm turning more and more into the writer--and child of God--the Lord wants me to be. (and if you're wondering - yeah, I'll put a current picture of him up here. ON his birthday)

How about you? In what ways have you seen your own growth as a writer?


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

7 comments:

  1. Oi, I remember how I felt when my biggest boy turned 10 (just over a year ago). It was like a reality check. I'm sorry... exactly HOW much time has gone by? Now he can look me in the eyes (on flat feet) and is getting too smart for his (and my) britches. Sigh.

    And it's wonderful to hear how you've grown as a writer. We all get the blessings from that :) Keep on writin', Jo. And happy (early) birthday to your Andrew!

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  2. I just realized last night my youngest is going to be 18 in 3 months. Wow! What a reality check that was. 17 sounds young. 18, not so much:( Hold onto that 10 year old. They grow up so fast!

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  3. You asked in what ways we have grown as a writer.... oh, my... and part of that involves growing with technology. My first poem was published (by efforts of my rambunctious mom) before I could even write.... then there was the typewriter era and now, my first blog with the help of Vonnie eleven days ago... and writing my heart now that I am "retired". Great photo (I bet he could kill you - tell him it could have been one of those toys and boy in the bathtub ones so he should relax) GRIN

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  4. When our babies grow up it can be bittersweet. We are happy to see the progress but sad about them not needing us as much.

    Your relationship with your son will mature and grow. Help him to develop a more independent relationship with the Lord.

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  5. That heart-pang you feel when they turn another year older never stops, Jo, sorry to tell you. :)

    My writing has tightened up a lot - I can say more with fewer words. Evidence is Brad asking how many words a story is, and when I tell him, he says, "Wow, it seemed like lot more than that." :)

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  6. My little guy is about to turn 6 and that seems impossible, so 10, and 18...I can't imagine, or rather- don't want to.

    My writing? It's growing up, too. I am able to separate myself from what's written and love taking part in the crafting. It's like cooking, some of it's impulse and some of it's planned. Never the same twice and sometimes it's a royal flop. But sometimes? Divine (and I mean that in its truest sense- because like children, the finished product often feels like I had nothing to do with it).

    Good post, Joanne :)

    Happy Birthday to Andrew, too. Double digits, dude.

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  7. Happy Birthday to your growing boy!
    I think as a writer I've grown with understanding more what works and what doesn't and some of the little areas that I had no clue about:)

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