So I haven't been posting a lot recently. Mostly that's due to run of the mill stuff: sick ponies, sick kitties, heat waves, planting things, housesitting, a pregnant sis who's now beginning to run into things with her stomach, slide off of furniture (she's fine) and get frustrated over not being able to do the things she always does. Then I've had a few extra things, emergencies with friends horses, broken down vehicles, and other randomness.
But I've also been writing a lot. Really a lot. I'm in the last quarter of a WIP titled 'Amarok and the Gone Missing Girl' about an albino Athabaskan boy who finds himself caught up in a desperate struggle to bring a girl he doesn't know back from the brink of madness. I'm also still working on 'Thornbriar' my retelling of Beauty and the Beast and I've started a new WIP I'm calling 'Goody Two Shoes' about a girl who never does anything she shouldn't until one day she finds herself in the middle of a conflict involving demons and angels, a conflict against an entity so horrible that it makes the Devil look like a pretty nice guy. I also keep going back to a WIP called 'The Rook Thief' on and off. This means that I've been coming in from the farm (or wherever I've been depending on random emergencies) and working on writing until late. Then it's up with the birds to start it all over again. But I'm happy with how things are going (although I'd just flip if I could get involved with an agent in a good way) and I LOVE writing like I am. I'm excited about my sis's baby, and about being able to have a good influence on her once she's been born.
Which brings me to the meanest thing anyone's ever said to me. It's not the first time it's been said to me, but it seems like the older I get, the more it hurts. And it does hurt. Which is saying something because I've got Kevlar skin for the most part. Want to know what this horrible statement was? 'Grow up already.' That's all. Just 'grow up already'. I was told to 'grow up already' in regards to, well, pretty much everything. I work with horses, out in the dirt and in a situation where my physical capabilities (and their deterioration) can affect my job, instead of working in an office in a 'stable' position. I live with my parents because doing so allows me to have a job I love (which doesn't pay huge) and write in my free time while owning my own horses. And my goal is to write forever, theoretically for money some day. I don't ever WANT to do anything but write and/or work with horses. And apparently all of these life choices mean that I'm immature and wanting in the department of adulthood.
I loath the term 'grow up'. And if growing up means not daydreaming about things you want to do, giving up dreams you have, just because they aren't likely to come true, acting your age, and that kind of thing, well frankly it's the dumbest thing ever. Where do people get off telling me that I need to grow up? That I owe it to my niece to be to 'grow up' so that I can be a good influence? Seriously? I'm single - because I choose to be. I live with my parents and share a car because I don't NEED a place of my own, or a car of my own, and the planet doesn't need the bigger carbon footprint. I don't smoke. I don't do drugs. I don't drink more than occasionally. I'm the girl who picks up the ten dollar bill and runs after the person who dropped it. I'm a prude and a happy hermit. But just because I won't give up writing and I insist on believing that one day my writing will get published, just because I still run around barefooted and play in creeks and ride horses by moonlight and sleep under trees with dogs and get joy out of squashing pennies on the train tracks, I'm immature and I should GROW UP ALREADY!
I've got news for people like those who told me that I should 'grow up already' (they weren't close friends or family or anything). They need to 'get a life' and get out of mine. People like them are EXACTLY why I love writing Young Adult books. I want kids to understand that they can be whoever and whatever they want to be. Their lives are their own, and no one can ever take that from them. In a world where kids are pulled in whatever direction the fad is at the moment, where kids are giving birth to kids and everyone is so busy growing up that most kids have never played baseball in a dirt lot or built a fort out of sticks behind someone's house, I think more people need to NOT grow up. I think telling someone that they need to 'grow up' is just an insidious way of informing them that they need to stop being different and see everything the same way that everyone else sees it. Growing up is a synonym for fitting in and aligning yourself with the status quo. Growing up is a filthy term for killing the child in yourself. You can be mature and responsible and still believe that there are fairies in your garden and that animals can talk and that there are doors to other places in your basement. You can conduct yourself as an adult in adult situations and still go lay on the bank of a creek and hang over the edge watching minnows and enjoy it. You can wear pumps and pinstripes to a meeting and still go barefoot in a rainstorm.
I will never grow up.