So over the past few years, my kids have occasionally stood beside or behind me at my desk; each time asking “Are you done yet?”
My answer is always “Almost. Just a little more to go.” The kids would cheer and then stand and wait…and wait…and wait; eventually falling asleep. They would wake up the next morning and rush downstairs, hoping to see a shiny new book on my desk. What they would find, of course, is Mom still at her desk typing away. “Almost done, kids, almost done…”
Yeah, I’d get up to feed them, comb my daughter’s hair, and play an occasional game of Wizard 101 with my son. Sometimes we all curled up together to watch Phineas and Ferb or Kim Possible. But invariably, I had to get back to writing.
I honestly don’t know when they stopped waiting. I just know that I had to start summoning them when I wanted to read a passage out loud or get their input on a plot point. They started to get angry when I referred to my main character as their “sister.” They stopped telling people that I was a writer…they just said I was busy.
Then I finished the book. I was happy. They were ecstatic. They cheered. My daughter told her friends. My son called me to watch his skateboarding feats. All was right with the world…until I told them about book 2.
They’re both in high school now. They have jobs and lives. They feed themselves and my daughter is quite proficient at maintaining her own hair. I hafta beg my son to play Wizard 101 with me.
But their “sister”…she’s still with me every day, telling me her story, enduring the life I’m creating for her, not flying away no matter how much she grows up.
Deborah L.S. King