Monday, September 20, 2004

I Know Exactly What He Meant

Saturday morning I was doing a little channel surfing while waiting for my pilates tape to rewind when I stumbled upon one of those Book TV that I always only find by accident. This one involved Walter Dean Myers who wrote a marvelous book called Monster so I decided to kick back and watch for a while.

Myers was talking with his son, Christopher an author and illustrator who has done the artwork for a couple of Caldecott Honor Books, which is not too shabby. The two of them had this...this...joking, not take each other too seriously thing going that I don't think the audience totally got. Sometimes you click with an audience, sometimes you don't.

But young Myers said something that totally clicked with me. He said that growing up the child of an author, as he did, writing was something he just believed was open to him. He did not have to convince himself that writing was something he could do.

Having grown up, myself, the child of a farmer and a housewife who later became a cafeteria cook, I knew immediately what he was talking about. Writing was so far away from the experience of my family and the people we knew that I might as well have been thinking of becoming an astronaut. Definitely it was a struggle to convince myself that writing was something I could do.

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