Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Books and Babies

A few years ago, my best friend from junior high was expecting her first baby and I was expecting my first…book! I was finishing final edits on my manuscript and we were both wondering which of our little bundles of joy would arrive first. As it turned out, Magick Charm did, on September 1. Little Finn arrived about two months later.

In a way, writing books is a tiny bit like raising children. Writing them takes countless hours and sleepless nights. Editing them can make you feel alternately happy and overwhelmed. You do everything you can to make them the best books possible before sending them out into the world, a prospect both thrilling and terrifying at the same time. You feel proud when they’re received well and fiercely defensive when they’re criticized.

Proud parent of Magick Charm and Practically Dreaming

Side note: This doesn’t mean you should go on the offensive with critics of your books. Let your paper and ink children stand on their own and speak for themselves. Getting into nasty online debates is the literary version of being the dad who screams and fights with all the coaches and refs from the sidelines of his kids' games. Just don’t do it!

Marcus and his "Nen"
Today, it seems I’m surrounded by kids. My childhood friend now has two little ones, and I spend a lot of time with the newborn of another close friend. I have two paperback children and several more on the way. 

Sometimes it can take more than nine months from conception to delivery of a literary work, but hey, I don’t have to pay for my books to go to college! 


  1. You have done a fantastic job raising your "children", Jen!! :)

  2. Ha! That's a good point about college. Hehehe! I have book children and a son, and they're both hard work.

  3. Congrats on both of your book children! You should be as proud as any other mother, I know I would be. I'm sure you spent many hours laboring over them.

  4. Great point about books being like our children. I hadn't thought of it quite like that before.
    Last night I stayed up all night doing final revisions and just couldn't go to bed until I was done.

  5. Rechelle, isn't that always the way? I always manage to finish edits in the middle of the night. I get so close and just can't go to bed until it's done!

  6. I totally loved this post. I'm an author too, but not a mother. I can totally see where you're coming from lol but friends of mine who do have little ones probably wouldn't agree (nothing can ever compare to having babies, so I'm told!) Bah Humbug :D

  7. Suzy, I would agree with your friends - parenthood of books would be a much lesser degree than parenthood to tiny humans, I imagine. I've never been as exhausted writing as I've seen my friend after a night with eight feedings and no sleep! Could be that's part of the reason why I've got paper kids instead of the other kind! ;)