Write Side Up seemed like the perfect name for this blog because it’s taken me a lifetime to get here, but this thing, writing, is me finally getting it right. It’s the first thing I’ve ever done that allows me to just be all me all the time. It’s me doing what I believe I’m called to do.
I love the blog’s banner photo up top. Monica, who did such an awesome job designing the site, made that choice and I had to laugh out loud when I first saw it like that.
It’s me and my little sister back in what was my favorite house growing up – one that will make it’s way into many of my stories. Of course, if we didn’t move from that house to the next one, I might not be writing MG & YA Fiction, so I’m not complaining. We moved when I was nine. Those next eight years play a big part in what I write. But I’ll get to all that later.
You might notice I’m wearing a cowboy hat. I see that now and can’t get past the irony of how, regardless of what role I played back then, I was always the “Indian.” I just didn’t know it. I don’t remember learning that I was part Sioux until I was in middle school, maybe high school. Sad thing is, as a kid, I didn’t really care about that sort of thing.
It’s like we’re born with all this life already attached to us only we don’t stop and learn much about it until it’s too late. We’ve only got so many hours in the day, after all, to live this one life and I was the sort of kid who needed to wring every second out of every day. Probably because I spent a lot of my early years trying not to die (but that’s another story).
Regretfully, I never asked my gram about her grandpa. I was too busy playing and finding ways to torment my sister (like catching a half-dozen bumblebees in an old peanut butter jar, shaking it good, loosening the lid, and tossing it like some buzzy live grenade into gram’s backyard). I’d sure ask now (and I’d leave those bees alone, too, though I’d still find a way to let my sister know I was there). Now there’s no one left in my family who ever really knew the original Lafayette.
Back when we lived in the house in the photo, those are some of the best memories I have. My favorite memories have to do with (in no particular order) my closet, the full attic, my basketball hoop, playing in the cemetery down the street, the secret ways through the neighborhood that only us kids knew, climbing the brick walls of the now-abandoned school and sitting on the roof, the backyard alleys, the park, the hill (because of go-kart racing and the flood that changed everything), climbing trees, and the many situations I somehow managed to get myself into. Most of those things are making their way into my writing.
I guess, in a way, writing is my attempt to make things right-side up (in the world and in my own life). Hopefully you’ll enjoy the blog as I explore my childhood, why I write, some of the things I’ve learned on this journey, writers and other people who inspire me, how humor saved me, and more. Maybe even some tips on how to survive a little sister.
Thanks for stopping by. See you soon.
Photo courtesy public domain – Library of Congress