Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Shades of Acceptance

There’s no simple way to sum up how the people in my life react to the fact that I love to write since everyone reacts to the news differently. To complicate my answer further some new people have wandered into my life and some of the existing occupants have changed their reactions.

Up until this last year I would have said my parents reacted about the same as they’d react to me saying I ate babies. The fact that I write has always worried my family because they thought it was a distraction that would keep me from a stable career. For a long time whenever I tried to talk to them about writing they would nod, smile, make a comment about how maybe I needed to ask the teacher for more homework if I had all this spare time, and take advantage of that statement to start talking about school and my future.

I hadn’t realized how much the situation had changed until recently when I mentioned to my mom a Writing Celebration Piece I’d written for a Language Arts class. Out of the blue my mom stopped me, and asked what my piece had been about. Unsure I hedged telling her it was just a character description before I tried to move the conversation into safer waters, but instead of letting me she stopped me again and asked if she could read it. She had never done anything like that before.

For as long as I’ve been writing my dad and my brothers haven’t changed their opinions on my writing, and their opinion is they don’t have an opinion. Honestly, they really don’t care, and they’ll tell you as much if you ask. As long as I get good grades my dad doesn’t care, and as long as it doesn’t keep me from helping them out when they need me my brothers don’t care.

Most of my friends are pretty apathetic when it comes to my writing. They aren’t writers, so it makes very little sense to them that I am. They try to be supportive by offering to read my work or giving me topic suggestions, but mainly they shuffle their feet and ignore it for lack a better response.

The exception to that comment is Jimmy. He never offers me ideas or asks if he can read what I've written. No, he checks to see if I’m getting stuck on anything and if I am takes the time to help me talk it out. When I was having problems incorporating the military into Monstrous he'd spend hours at a time fielding my questions. Even the really strange ones like do you know if the military has a plan in place in the event of nuclear war didn't even break his stride. Also, he’d tell me about what he was working on, and we’d talk out scenes he was having problems with. The cool part was that he seemed to enjoy talking about writing as much as I did.

Then of course there are the Ink Slingers. I don’t know what I’d do without them. Ella was the one who got me back into writing after everyone else had convinced me to throw in the towel. Ella, Bethany, Hayley, Emery, and Bethany were the first people ever to read my work, and their support has made all the difference to me.

- Aaron

1 comment:

Linda Glaz said...

I was fortunate that I did home care for my mom the last six months of her life, and her room was just off the kitchen where I do most of my writing. It's cozy here. But she would have me read as I wrote. What a blessing to have had her encouragment all the way to the end of her life.