To Publish or Perish

L came home yesterday and announced he had begun his magnum opus, called…. er…. maybe, “Red Eyes in the Night.” He explained it was a horror story (this from the boy who still nearly faints at the sight, description, or even mention of blood) and he had conquered Ch. 1. He told me that the secret to writing a successful horror story is to “add as much detail as possible. That’s very, very important.” When I asked why, he said, “details make the reader feel like he’s IN the story.”

Sounds good.

He told me that the second chapter would start with a simple sentence: “Meet me at the dock.”

“Doesn’t that make you curious? Aren’t you just dying to know what happens?”

He also said this was the first book he was truly committed to finishing. He then asked, “how old do you need to be to publish a book?”

M: “There are no age limits.”

L: “Wow. Seriously? Okay, I’m going to really make it the best it can be and see if I can get my book published.”

I didn’t have the heart to tell him I could make (and publish) the book for him. Better to have him shop it around, and see what kind of movie deal he can secure.

 

To Starve?

L is intent on being an artist. Having grown up wanting to be an artist (and somehow actually making a living at something very creative), my heart stops when I hear how passionate he is about this endeavor. The expression “starving artist” sounds romantic. It’s not. And, of course, I’ll support whatever he loves.

As long as it’s legal.

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Gratuitous Post or… Letting Go

Last Fourth of July:

Oh, the Fourth. BBQ, fireworks (provided by professionals), loud noises, and the ever-present, “Ooooooooh” after a giant peony-shaped burst appears over head.┬áCheesy, roadside stand fireworks, not so much. Years and years and years of hearing my mother say, “you’ll lose a hand” have embedded themselves in my psyche. Even sparklers are fraught with danger.

Actually, they’re not. They’re fun and manageable and if I can shut my brain off and let go, everything’s going to be fine. Letting go, not so easy.

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Surprise?

I arranged for L to take a swimming evaluation and start private lessons. My error? I did all of this a couple of days ago and somehow forgot to tell him.

M: “L, we’re going to go swimming today! Woo hoo!”

L: “What do you mean?”

M: “We’re (I’m using the royal WE) going to a great, heated pool and are going to see where you are and then start lessons.”

L: “WHAT?! I’ve been taking lessons at school for three years.”

M: “Yes, and they just concluded, so now you get to have cool, individual lessons.”

L: “Why didn’t you tell me? What if I drown? What if I’m not good enough? Mom, this is the kind of thing I need to prepare for. I need to have enough time to mentally get myself ready. You can’t just spring this on me. This is becoming a problem. You sign me up for things but you don’t ask me and you don’t give me enough notice. This doesn’t work for me. Who knows if these people can really swim? If I’ll be supervised? Do you want me at the bottom of the pool?”

M: “Got it. Discuss then act.”