When I consider my childhood, I always think back on the many ways my mother inadvertently shaped me into being a writer.
If I asked how to spell a word, she would make me look it up in the dictionary and if I claimed that I could not look up a word that I could not spell, she would make me start with the first letter and go through the dictionary until I found it. If I were to end a sentence with a preposition, for example, “Mom, where’s my book at?” she would respond with, “Behind that preposition.” and then refuse to answer the question.
Many times, however, she would purposefully mispronounce words so that I would “hear” how they were spelled. For instance, she would often come home from work and explain that she was “fah-ti-gewed” which helped reiterate how the word fatigue was properly spelled. Tonight, I am very, very fah-ti-gewed.
I wrote 1299 words throughout today (didn’t really talk to her) and despite my best efforts at keep my second-job, not so much secret, but just understated, I continually broach the subject to help answer what I do with all my time. I think the answer of “Well, I’m writing a novel” sounds far better than, “Well, I’m playing Rock Band for hours at a time” or “Well, I’m asleep on my sofa watching a TV channel I created from my own videos” sounds to other people. The weird writer sits better with others, I suppose, more than just being weird.