…I just sent my child off to middle school. What? You ask. Yes, I’ll repeat it: I just sent my first child off to middle school. My first child being a manuscript entitled The Rose of Coracus.
Authors often use the metaphor of birth and child rearing for their manuscripts and I’m beginning to understand it better. Luckily, birth to maturity doesn’t take eighteen years for a manuscript. But I have toiled quite a bit on preparing my child for the ‘real world’. My manuscript already survived elementary school; that was the five months of critiques during the writing workshops at Hamilton. I just spent the last few months preparing my child for the rigors of middle school and now have sent it out to my trusted readers for further critique. Have I prepared it well, giving it all the necessary skills (and commas and plot arcs) to do well? We shall see, but like a good parent I now must step aside and see what happens. I will not be a helicopter parent. My child can speak for herself (and hopefully interest and move my readers).
I know my manuscript will still need me. We’ll have revisions to do yet in preparation for high school, college and beyond. But, someday, hopefully in the foreseeable future my child will spread its wings (and find a publisher) and leave me with an empty nest. I may cry a bit, but those are happy tears.
Good thing I have many other children to pay attention to. They’re just a mere twinkle in my eye, or, at the most mature, toddlers. Quite a handful.
And so, dear readers, I’ll update you with Christmas cards and family photos…my children do grow up quite fast!