I’ve never been a big fan of family reunions. I don’t know why, it’s not that I don’t like my family. It just feels weird to gather once or twice a year and act like a family… like it’s forced. I like my family, very much. I have a HUGE family and they’re all pretty good people. Why wouldn’t I want to hang around with them? I always end up having fun so WHY do I drag my feet?
Okay, I’m weird. It’s okay because I’ve accepted that I’m weird. But my mother always starts mentioning the Christmas gathering weeks ahead of time. My aunt mails me a nice invitation and this morning… well… I just spaced it. When the spousal unit woke up he asked what time we had to be there. OH SHIT! Five minutes ago…
Yeah, I was late.
But then something happened once I got there. My second cousin (yep, family goes 3 cousins deep) asked me about my writing… uhhhh. How do we writers explain our process without sounding like a complete mental case. How do you explain hearing entire conversations in your head without someone strapping you in a straight jacket?
I am always tempted not to edit myself and just go into a long diatribe how I hear voices, conversations, smell what they smell and try to get it all down as fast as I can. Then there’s a ton of editing where I yell curse words at my laptop. After that, I get to write the blurb on the back and design my cover art where I’m act like a self-conscious teenager looking for approval from every source imaginable. Yep, I’m a nut. Probably certifiable – I am, if you ask the asshole lawyer formerly known as my spouse.
Let this serve as a public service announcement. The next time you see someone sitting at a laptop, shouting curse words, chain smoking and flipping off the screen, do not call the authorities. Ask if they can use a beta reader 😉 I talk with other writers a lot and this sort of behavior is common. It’s how the process (for most of us) works. And if you don’t think writers can be crazy I have one person’s name to mention: Edgar Allen Poe