We now take you to a dramatic scene that would shape a young freakboy's familial interactions for decades to come.
The location - An expansive living room of a beautiful home nestled on the outskirts of a scenic Colorado town
NON-RELATIVE: What do you want to be when you grow up?
YOUNG FREAKBOY (around 14 years of age): An author.
RELATIVE (in a horrified screech): You can't do that!
Also, end of this freakboy bringing up his writing or any creative project around certain family members. Even now, years later, I just can't bring myself to broach the topic.
I was with most of my immediate family on Sunday. It was a nice dinner and a chance to see a niece before her, her husband and their unborn son move to Florida. I couldn't bring myself to mention my recent achievement of VISION BENT and I had the opportunity. A different niece was talking about poetry, but I bit my tongue. I had a chance to at least mention this blog because she talked about preferring unrealistic writing to the kind that requires research. Still, Uncle Freakboy remained mute. Ok then, let us never refer to myself in that way again.
Yes, I know that I shouldn't allow one moment from forever ago to haunt and control me. Perhaps it's not strictly that one moment. History has shown me how whatever I may accomplish will never be good enough. Instead of being happy that I defied my perceived disability and published VISION BENT, the conversation would turn to the sordid topic of coin, effectively ruining my accomplishment. Then, if my creative endeavor was read, the screeching would be unstoppable, at least legally. Before you give the allegedly simple act of telling the screecher to shut-up, the screeching wouldn't really end, it would just be transferred. My sister Margaret would then receive the screeching, as our mom once did. Screeching by proxy. So, it's just easier not to.
Sure, my nieces and nephew have grown up not really knowing me. Without my creative side, I am nothing. An empty carton. An erased chalkboard. A flushed toilet. Maybe they see me as their half-blind, loser uncle who only talks about television and films. Even those topics are censored. A discussion of my love of John Waters would be most unwelcome and very awkward. I dare not mention Rosemary's Baby being my favorite film or risk receiving unsolicited religious screeching. Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating the latter, but soul-saving pamphlets could arrive in my mail. At least my half-blind eyes wouldn't be able to read them.
I don't know. Maybe this blog, along with my books, are my safe space. My exotic getaway from everyday life. My real home. Perhaps I don't want to voluntarily put out the welcome mat. If my nieces and nephew stumble upon my online home, either by accident or some other relative mentioning it, then they are most welcome to visit my mindscape and learn all about their authentically freaky and multi-layered Uncle John.
Thank you for reading or listening to my half-blind words.
Side note...I'm typing this while riding in the backseat on the way home from the aforementioned family dinner, but I will probably not post it until Monday. I'm not sure I'll try to ride & write again. The sensation makes me feel a bit queasy...or maybe it's just family dinners.
P.S. The first reader of the VISION BENT paperback resides in St. Ives, Cornwall, England! Yeah, baby, I'm an internationally known indie author! ;)