Little steps add up

Step-by-step we make headway Photo: Pete Stanton (Creative Commons Flickr)
Step-by-step we make headway. Photo: Pete Stanton (Creative Commons Flickr)

I saw my middle son off to school today. This time there were no tears because, well, he is 27. As I write this he is eating breakfast with students in his cohort and listening to orientation speeches. Heady stuff.

Nathan (center) and his team at Fred Meyer. "I love these guys."
Nathan (center) and his team at Fred Meyer. “I love these guys,” he says.

Almost two years ago I watched him start out along this newfound path. He stepped down from assistant retail manager to be a sales clerk, working 20-30 hours a week while taking post-baccalaureate classes. More student loans. Tough tests. The GRE exam. Arduous applications. Step-by-step Nathan overcame each obstacle.

I should be teaching him, but this time he taught me. Becoming a professional writer, like becoming a speech-language pathologist, takes time and work and investment. Oh yes, and guts. A change in mindset. A commitment to keep on taking those scary steps, one after the other.

So I’ve been following in Nathan’s wake. I was his consultant for graduate school applications and in turn, he became mine for the Darcy By Any Other Name cover design. He thoughtfully studied my synopsis and back copy and offered suggestions. He pored over each of the graphic designer’s mock-ups.

Over time, Nathan and his brother Michael have become my advisers. I never saw that one coming! But they like my writing and are interested in the book’s journey. Yesterday we debated at length whether the formatted print edition (at 600-odd pages) should be split into two books. Surprisingly, they said no, not this time. Nathan, an avid series reader, was quite convincing.

Who knew my sons would be so smart? They used to learn from me, and now I am learning from them. Step-by-step.

4 thoughts on “Little steps add up

  1. Thanks, Pat. I marvel at how much I learn from them. And that they are interested in my books. They’re light romance, and my sons are, well…guys. Shaking my head and smiling.


  2. Ah, yes, step by step is still something I struggle with yet I’m working on. Learning from my sons would be expressed in one word, EEK! Yet as my youngest said the other day, “Mom, you’re the last one alive with these memories. Write them down.” So, I really need to get with it. Like Pat said, “I love how the Lord works…”
    Your older kid sister in Christ,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You have some great memories locked in there. Even if you spend 20 minutes jotting down everything you remember about an incident, without critiquing your writing–just getting the facts down–you’ll be in good shape.

      Thanks for stopping by, my sister is not that old!


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