My brother-in-law is retiring this year. He is a superior court judge in a rural county in California who has always been good with the written word. Up to now, his hobbies have always been fairly limited in scope. He's always wanted to be a cowboy. This fascination, with all things pertaining to the old West, came about in the 50's when his parents gave him a coon skin cap and Davey Crockett flannel pajamas. Most of us grow out of our childhood passions--not David. Recently, he and his wife purchased a cattle ranch on 145 acres in New Mexico, near the Apache Indian reservation. When their house sells they intend to relocate to this place. He graciously informed us that they have plenty of land if we ever want to move there. I considered it for a couple of nano seconds, but declined once he mentioned that the post office was in the back of a tractor trailer rig, taken off its axels, in the nearest town, 58 miles away.
He has been very supportive of my efforts to become published so I have tried to be happy for him. After all, he is going to be living his dream. In one of our recent conversations about his new life I asked him what he expected to do to take up all his new found free time. Without missing a beat, he informed me that he intended to "do some writing". It seems he has an idea or two for a couple of courtroom thrillers. I have to admit that I am pleased. It will be nice to have someone in the family who understands what writers go through before being published. I suggested that he get involved with a writer's group as soon as he begins the process. I pointed out that it will save him some time down the road. Although he did agree that it was a good idea, he said he wanted to wait until later because he didn't want anything to keep him from writing his book, his way. Boy, does he have a lot to learn!
I look at writing differently than I did when I first started. I have less stars in my eyes and a wider butt. I am not jaded, just pragmatic. Although there is a creative aspect to the business of writing, it is indeed a business.
How have your ideas changed about writing and the writing process? What has changed in the way you view the industry?