Recently I watched the movie, The Blind Side. I had seen it before, but I was homesick and wanted to hear a familiar twang. And I cried (again) through the entire dang movie. I cried like a baby, willingly and shamelessly. At one point I was crying and I didn't even know why!
Leigh Anne Tuohy loved her son, and was going to mother him no matter what, but when it was time to let him go, she did. This boy who looked nothing like her, and who didn't even come to her until he was sixteen, had been wandering the world waiting to be mothered by her. He had been in and out of foster homes his entire life and any rational thinking person would have abandoned the idea of taking him in, much less adopting him. But Tuohy was uncynical, and that I think was the winning quality that ensured her devotion to her adopted son.
I couldn't help but think about the parallels between the film and all us Mother Freakin' Writers. We all love our children, without cynicism, without doubt. And likewise, when we devote ourselves to a story, we have to believe it is the right thing to do. We have to put our cynicism aside. We have to forget the odds of publication are against us. We have to do that because we love writing. We have to believe it will turn out okay. To some extent, we have to let go of an end-game and just love. And when we've poured our hearts and souls out, we also have to learn when to let a story go, which can be so, so difficult to do.
I recently read a great article on creatives and letting go. Mothering, like writing, requires it. I've had to do this with a short story and with a novel and both were equally hard to do. As the article states:
"At some point in the process of creation you have to let it go. Otherwise it’s not creation, it’s babysitting."
Have a look and see if you can relate or learn from these words of wisdom.
And if you aren't close to letting your baby go, maybe this article on women being the top earning authors will spur you on:
Until next time...