Monday, April 22, 2013

When Funny Takes the Cake

About four years ago, I had a sudden idea I wanted to decorate cakes. I needed a mom hobby, and cakes taste good. Of course, I had fiddled with writing by now. But as Bermuda Scott and the Anywhere Box never became an actual book, my writing deflated like an under-baked cake with an expired leavening agent.

(pause of appreciation for over-the-top metaphor which is actually a simile)

I shared my cake-decorating dream with my mom, my champion, and she told me it was a terrible idea. I'm still not sure why, to this day, she told me it was a terrible idea. I've teased her about it enough. But maybe she was right because after baking a few birthday cakes for my son and niece and nephew (and uh...having her fix the frosting on a few), my passion sort of fizzled out like...like a bad book idea involving a traveling linesman's daughter and her discovery of a place-travel family heirloom box.

Fast forward just a bit, and I picked up writing again. I told my mom I wanted to write, that I was serious, more serious than birthday cakes. She loved the idea...encouraged me...bought me writing books! And so I attempted to write my HAUNTINGLY BEAUTIFUL young adult novel called Pieces of Moon, which went leaps beyond my first attempts at writing a book. In fact, I finished it. And It was ugly. And I started writing it again.

Sometime during this rewrite there was a day my mom told me about a funny book she'd read. Then she told me that I should write "funny." But silly mom who knew little about writing and once squashed my cake decorating dream...why would I write "funny" when I was trying to write HAUNTINGLY BEAUTIFUL?

But after I moved to Texas, I realized that I wasn't enjoying my hauntingly beautiful young adult novel. So I eventually did start "funny" and finished it a year later. And, for me, I've had a much better experience with A Pretty Pirate Pickle. At the end of the day, after I've been changing diapers and potty training and cooking and playing sibling referee, it's been a nice escape for me. I still haven't given up on HAUNTINGLY BEAUTIFUL--or cake decorating for that matter-- but I think funny fits me better.

And so my mom was right.