You know your mom’s a writer when…

Recently we had back to school night. The children drew pictures of their summer vacation and wrote about it. Someone went to Italy. Someone went to Chicago.

Did my child write about day camp or maybe going to the beach?


My child wrote about how she and her older sister went to Unicornland.

I’m not sure the teen knows they went to Unicornland over the summer.

I certainly didn’t know they went to Unicornland this summer.

“She’s so imaginative,” someone told me.

But I got the feeling that some of the other parents thought it’s a little more than *just* tot imagination. No, it’s because her mom is a (gasp) fiction writer.

I’ve hear it all before.

When the tot told my elderly aunt about her imaginary friend Bobo the Vampire giraffe that eats old people.

When the tot spoke of zombie unicorns, mermaid vampires, and dragons who explode, while at school.

Okay, so maybe normal tots haven’t developed their own mythologies about wereseahorses. Or have penpals who are fictional Vampires. The tot also recently told an author at a book signing that she was really a faery (and props to said writer who whispered back "I believe you.")

But it’s not necessarily because I’m a writer

(well, maybe it is.)

Is it really such a bad thing?

I love the tot’s imagination. When I need a wacky idea or hit a problem in a WIP, she always has ideas for me. Granted, they’re not always what I’m looking for, but they always give me a laugh. Why can’t worm farmers enter “sexy man contests” anyway?

Though she hasn't grasped yet that it's not "just" a story, if you're going to give your characters pink eyes when the story is set in our world you have to give it a reason.

But she has time to learn all that "stuff."

Also, she supports me as writer. She gives me (incredibly funny) plot lines, she shows bookstore employees where my book will be on the shelf, and she told me that I don’t suck as a writer—“not anymore, mama.”

Who could ask for anything more?

I love the tot’s overactive imagination regardless of whether it’s because of who she is or because I’m a writer.

Who knows what stories *she’ll* write one day.

When wereseahorses are the next big thing, you’ll know who started it.


Just Nancy said...

I have a 21 year old daughter who comes to RWA meetings with me sometimes and when I asked her this year if she was going to come to our Readers' Luncheon this year, she looked like I was nuts and said, "D'uh, Mom, free books."

My 8 year old son came to the meeting (with his day) when spoke on world building and map making. He came up during the map making session to add to my map. He drew giant flying guinea pigs.

Truly, your daughter is totally normal!

Lisa Kessler said...

The tot is lucky to have you! :)

When Panda was in first grade the school newletter used to pose a question to the first graders and post their answers in the monthly newsletter...

In March the question was "If you caught a leprechaun, what would you ask him for?"

There were the usual answers, pot of gold, money, toys. There were touching answers, a car for my Mom, medicine for my grandma so she can walk again...

Then there was Panda's answer: "I'd ask for a shaved ice recipe."


I love kids!!! :) Keep writing down the tot's stories! She'll love them later when she's grown! :)

Panda also made a video dressed as a pilgrim where she explained that besides turkey, the pilgrims and indians also feasted on pepperoni pizza... Little known fact! LOL

Great blog Suzi!!!

Lisa :)

KL Grady said...

Your kid is awesome and is also invited over here anytime to give me plot ideas. ;D

danicaavet said...

I'm with KL...I could've used some worm farmers in some of my books. I hit up my mom and brother for brainstorm sessions when my BFF and CPs can't help me out. I don't always use their ideas, but they get my brain thinking over the problem and I can sort it out myself.

I think your tot is going to be a writer some day and when she's accepting her RITA, she'll say "Thanks Mom!"

Elysa said...

Kid's imaginations are amazing. Too bad our school system seems to beat it out of them early on. Nurture your daughter's flights of fancy, she'll bless you for it.

Theresa Meyers said...

This reminds me of when I was helping the kids in my daughter's first grade class make their own "books" as a class project.

Some kids wrote about dragons in their lunchboxes, or bugs that ate down the school. My daughter wrote a romance. And the hero had "hair like the sun and eyes the blue of Texas skies." (and we've never lived in Texas). The hero asked her if she liked horses, got her a horse to ride and the rode off into the sunset "happily ever after."

Totally made my year. At least now when people ask my kids "What does your mom do?" they say "She's a writer," instead of "She sits in front of the computer all day" like they did when they were smaller.

Suzanne Lazear said...

@Nancy -- of course free books, lol. Love the guinea pig map

@Lisa -- I think Leprechauns have good shaved ice recipes, right

@KL -- sure, when do you want her, lol

@danica -- at RWA this year I saw a girl about 12 helping her mom out at the book signing, that's totally the tot in a few years, lol.

@Elysa -- I hope she doesn't stop writing because it's "uncool" like I did

@Theresa -- I love it. "She sits in front of the computer" Classic.

Karin Shah said...

I have a completed work that has them same title as a new release (though the ms. was started like five years ago) I went to my five and seven year olds for brainstorming ideas. I'm using one the five year old suggested.

I always laugh when agents start saying paranormal will probably shrink. I think it will level out, but when you look at what the kids want to read now -- it's full of magic and other worldly ideas and creatures. I don't think most of them are going to grow out of it...