Is there anyway to work Santa, The phantom of the Opera, Blade, Dave White, and my mom into a witty header? Part Two.

I owe Dave White an apology, and he didn’t even know it was coming. Lately I’ve been berrating him for wasting valuable writing energy on short stories instead of his novel. Well I’ve gone and done the same thing. I was hit by a couple of great story ideas and just had to take the time to write them. The first is an idea that I think might finally work for a superhero noir story I’ve been wanting to write and the second is for a supersecret project that will be detailed in this blog at the end of next month. Stay tuned.

So Dave, I’m sorry. And get your digs in now because I’m deleting this at the end of the day. πŸ™‚

HI MOM!

So I just recently found out that my mom reads this blog and was not amused by my swearing and other topics of debautchery. I have a close relationship with my mom and my entire family and I respect her concerns, but several of my stories and novels have some pretty rough stuff in them and I think it adds to the story and don’t plan on changing them. I guess in a perfect word, my family would support me and my writing without ever actually reading any of it, but I know that’s not the case. So how do you other authors handle this kind of stuff with people who are close to you? Does anybody’s mom, or grandma, or pastor, or priest, or wife, or husband, or kids etc… not approve of what they write? How do you maintain a good relationship with that person without scraping the projects they disapprove of?

14 thoughts on “Is there anyway to work Santa, The phantom of the Opera, Blade, Dave White, and my mom into a witty header? Part Two.

  1. Same position as you, Bryon–close to my mother, but a few months ago she found (or more likely, a friend of hers found the story and told her) the story I’d written for Pindeldyboz about the guy who heckles baseball players. Oh man, was that a bad conversation, espec b/c the story was based on a true incident (the narrator is loosely based on my father) so not only was I berated for using bad language, but for misrepresenting my father.Oh, and spoiling my chances at making a proper match or something, but that was sheer irrationality speaking.Truth is, it hurt, the fact that she didn’t get it, and to a certain extent, still doesn’t. Because we’re close I show her my columns and other freelance stuff and her reaction’s usually on the order of “that’s great–but here’s how this sentence could work better” and I have to grit my teeth b/c um, I could get that advice from professional writers without the emotional baggage. And so, I’m still working all that out. Just like I’m working out all my other issues with my family…:-)

  2. My parents pretty much left me alone as I discovered my talent and grew as a writer. Early on, if I thought a piece of writing would upset my mother, I didn’t show it to her.In recent years, she’s come to appreciate the goals of each of my pieces. She’s become a good judge of what needs work. (I also think she understands my work better because I write better now than I did then.)She’s still a bit biased in my favor, but we’re working on that. πŸ™‚

  3. I don’t show any of my writing to my parents, however, my eight year old son, Ben, is very concerned that I am writing a book where people get killed. I have tried explaining to him that the book is more about catching the people who do the killing, but it’s done little to assuage his concerns.

  4. My mom (and other family members) read my blog and some amount of my fiction, and so far I haven’t heard any negative reaction. Of course, all their feedback is that completely meaningless, generic that’s-nice-dear variety that WASPs have perfected. So maybe they like my stuff, maybe not. There’ve been enough times when they told me I looked like I’d lost weight when I’d gained weight that I’m kind of immune to that flavor of praise. But it’s better than the alternative.

  5. Ya know, in terms of the writing stuff, my parents are really supportive. My dad is my first reader, he makes comments and I take some of his advice and leave some of it alone (I take less and less as I get older and write more than he has). My mother always reads my work, and she’s very supportive as well. Every once in a while she’ll say “I don’t really like the language, but I know that’s how those stories are sometimes.” I use some of that stuff for my own work. For instance I’ll say “Okay, let me try to write a story that sounds realistic but there’s no swearing.” I know both my parents will be at my first book signing, if I ever have one, and they’ll be the first to read my book. (wow, it just got real serious in here.)

  6. My parents are, AFAIK, happy whatever I write if it gets my name on a book somewhere.Of course, back in the summer I did get very drunk at a mass ‘gathering of the clan’ BBQ and start using “fucking” for punctuation every few words in a lengthy conversation with both my surviving grandparents so I doubt anything much would shock them these days.My kid brother found the whole episode hilarious.

  7. My mother wants Point Blank to do her a special copy with all the sweary words blanked out. When I broached the subject on the phone, sweating and cringing, there was complete silnece for 5 minutes and then she said “Welllllllllllll” (in that long drawn out ‘you’re going to pay for this for the rest of your life Donna’ way “I shall have to cancel the order I put in with the nice ladies at the bookshop.”By the way, this aging rock chick has her first drumming lesson in January, so this whole band/gig/groupie thing is a goer as far as I’m concerned. I would, however, quite like the groupies first…Donna

  8. Well Donna, I’ll be getting my guitar soon so we can plan on doing this right. And we’ll have to do a special mother’s show without any swear words. Are you coming to the Edgar’s this year?

  9. My father taught me to swear when I was twelve, I read my mom’s copy of Godfather when I was eleven and my parents had sex manuals featuring a man with crushed red velvet trousers that my sister and I read when we were nine. My mom checks most of my work for obvious grammatical errors I make in the overtaken by the muse moments of writing that leave spelling and grammar in the dust.I’m a lucky girl.

  10. My parents, same as Jennifer’s, are very supportive. My Dad sometimes asks me not to swear and I tell him that I’m an adult and it’s no reflection on him if I choose to cuss.And my mother likes the disturbing stuff I write. Of course she a huge fan of Andrew Vachss and Lehane and some other rather dark writers, so it takes a lot to shock her. I think as long as you are doing good work your Mom will be proud. And even if it sucks, if you get paid for it you should still be proud!Besides, debauchery is why a lot of come here!

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