When I write, I draw from my life. If you hang out with me here, or on social media, you might recognize tidbits from my life in my books. Just One Thing was set primarily on Mondays and most weeks start with me wishing social media friends Monday Glee. Carry Her Heart's heroine is a writer and a kindergarten story lady...yep, on both counts for me. One of my early books, Fairly Human, is the last book in a series about a writer's fairy godmother characters coming to life. If you ever read Heinlein, you might recognize his idea that well-loved characters really exist. That book that I grew up in inspired my own twist on that theory.
Briar Hill Road was probably the most autobiographical book to date. Oh, it's fiction, but we lost my mother-in-law to breast cancer, and in so many ways this book was an homage to her as well as me finding my way through that loss.
My life also is inspiring my ceramics class. My father-in-law carved wooden Santas. When I started the term, I gave myself the theme, Folk Art. (No, that was required in Ceramics II. You just had to come up with seven projects. Go ahead and roll your eyes that I added an element on to the requirement...my kids did. LOL) And of course, his Santas became an inspiration for me. He was truly an artist...a folk artist. I told myself I could come close. And the first few I made were directly inspired by what he did. But now I'm branching out and doing some of my own design (that one in the top picture). But he inspired them.
I also made two face jugs. Someone told me they were ugly, and they are. But that's the point....
"In the early part of the 19th century the form was adopted by white potters. The practice of making face jugs spread thoughout South Carolina and into Georgia, North Carolina and other states...The purpose of the jugs also evolved. The face jug became known as ugly jugs in the 1920's and was often used to store alcohol. The jugs became uglier in an attempt to identify the contents and frighten children." Chattanooga State Education
I've talked about finding out and exploring my Appalachian family history. I loved doing these jugs...it helped me feel connected to these generations of people I never met.
|My FIL's Santa|
I don't think we can disconnect from our life and our past. It inspires us in so many ways. As I work in the studio, I love taking what my father-in-law did and adapting it to what I'm doing, or exploring family I've never known and learning their past through my pottery. As I write, I love adding small tidbits of my real life in my fiction. My past inspires my present which leads me to my future...I love that continuity! And if you've been following my Novel Freshman Experience posts you're going to see a direct inspiration in my new work-in-progress. Stay tuned.
If you have a moment, I hope you'll check out one of my books. There are a bunch on sale this month. And you can see if you can find any of my real-life inspirations in them!
|Another one of my FIL's Santas|
Just One Thing