As a voracious reader, enthusiastic writer, and aspiring author, I know a little bit about the power of words. Imagine my delight when a member of my philistine family finally showed some interest in really good books. Yes, my husband, the Original Obnoxious One reads – nonfiction economic, law and business books. How do you spell boring?! My son, the Obnoxious One reads – economic and history text books at university. My daughter the Weird One reads – existential angst-ridden teen fiction. It hurts just to look at her books – really! The Weird One recently told me, “Mom, in all the best fiction, somebody always dies. Think of Disney’s Snow White and the Lion King. So, you should definitely kill off someone in your novel.” Yes dear,a must-have inclusion for a humorous middle grade novel.
It wasn’t enough for him to chew my slippers, shoes, boots, chairs, baseboards, drywall or mill-work. Is it any wonder he has digestive issues? Nope, he has officially moved on to books. Sigh – what an intellectual. And not just any old books, but the two books I purchased at the amazing Surrey International Writers’ Conference a couple weeks ago. And they were signed by the authors and addressed to me! Yeah, specifically The Rose Garden a wonderful story by Susanna Kearsley which luckily I read before Franklinstein struck, as well as The Fire in Fiction: Passion, Purpose and Techniques to Make Your Novel Great by Donald Maass. It was next in my pile of books to read. It looked really good; it looked really great in fact. So, can you imagine my reaction?
I placed the two books on my desk in the kitchen, and left the house for two hours. Apparently Franklinstein enjoyed himself very much in my absence. Perhaps he was familiar with John Milton’s words, “A good book is the precious life-blood of a master spirit.” Yeah, that must be it.
In the words of my wise friend, coach and freelance editor Sylvia Taylor, “Good thing that dog is REALLY cute!”
You can say that again. Many times. Really!