Stepping into the forest of my mind

Stepping into the forest of my mind
Just as every journey begins with a first step, every story begins with the first word.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Insecure Writers Want to Know: Have you ever included personal traditions/customs in your stories?

            What an interesting question. I guess the problem with answering this question is; I don’t consider any of my personal family’s traditions or customs unique.  
http://victoriamarielees.blogspot.com


            I start many a story or blog post with a family experience or two. From my personal experiences of Camping with FiveKids, to the national parks and forests we’ve visited, many of my YA short stories come from our adventures. But traditions and customs? I don’t think they are any different from anyone else’s.

            Let’s consider:
            Each summer, we camp with seven people in a tiny tent trailer that needs to be set up at each campsite. What’s different about that? We travel coast to coast and up into Canada for a month with those seven people—all sharing the duties of food preparation and clean-up for meals, accomplishing the laundry, hiking together for hours in the heat and the rain. Is that a tradition? Or is it just plain insanity?  

            In my memoir about attending college as a mother of five, I share how I made accomplishing a college degree and child rearing work. In this memoir, I share my belief that family comes first, that I am a mother first and a college student second. As a parent, I demonstrate to my children how to accomplish difficult goals, how to persevere through trial, and how to seek out assistance when necessary. But most of all, I believe I show my children how to stand up for themselves when they feel they are right. Is that sharing a custom or tradition out of the norm? Or is it a crazy person just trying to survive in a world, that in the beginning of the memoir, she felt she did not belong?  

You be the judge, cherished followers of Adventures in Writing. I’ll be interested to see how you’ve tackled this month’s question. It’s great having a topic to share our thoughts on each month. I am extremely thankful for all of you for being my sounding board and advisors in this writing and publishing game.

Thanks so much for visiting! Please follow Adventures in Writing if you haven’t already and connect with me online. Leave your blog link in your comment so I can be sure to do the same for you.

This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. We post on the first Wednesday of every month.  To join us, or learn more about the group, click HERE.  

23 comments:

  1. Four of us camping together was insanity to me.
    Showing your kids how to accomplish goals has become a little rarer these days...

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    1. You may be right, Alex. It's all about taking the time to show our kids how to accomplish goals. And yes! I agree. Camping with seven people in a tiny tent trailer is definitely insanity--especially for a month!

      It's always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing. Thanks so much for your note. Enjoy your weekend!

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  2. I think it's great how you've drawn on your own experiences and camping traditions in your writing. And it is so important to teach your kids to stand up for themselves. It's hard to do. I struggle with it sometimes and I'm a retired lawyer.

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    1. You are right, Natalie. It is extremely difficult to stand up for yourself, especially if you are a kid. I still struggle with this, too.

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I truly appreciate them. And thanks for your note here at Adventures in Writing. Have a beautiful weekend!

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  3. Sounds like a lot of good memories to pull from enjoyed reading.

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    1. Absolutely, Juneta! We have the best adventures sometimes. Thank you so much for your comment here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your weekend!

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  4. I think being an example and a mentor to your children is the greatest gift you can give them.

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Joylene. I truly appreciate them. And thanks for your note here at Adventures in Writing. Have a beautiful weekend!

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  5. I've never gone camping, so that's a unique tradition to me. :)

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    1. Oh camping is quite the experience, Chrys. You need to go with someone you really, really like being with because camping can be tough.

      Thank you so much for your comment here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your weekend!

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  6. It sounds fun. The closest I got was a tent and an elementary student. We had a blast, but I doubt it was anything like your experience. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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    1. Oh it can be so much fun, Anna! But bravo to you and your elementary student. So glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for note here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your weekend!

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    1. It really is. Everyone should at least try it...when it's not raining...at least for your first time. Thanks so much for note here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your weekend!

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  8. I've resuscitated making Johnny Bull Pudding like my sister and I did with our grandmother. For the past two years I've been trying, with the help of family, to perfect Grandma's Welsh Christmas pudding that she called Johnny Bull. Grandma never had a recipe written down. I'm going at this from memory. Fun.

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    1. Forgot to say that I'm trying to write a short story about making Johnny Bull Pudding with Grandma.

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    2. Dawn, what a splendid idea! Good luck with the short story. And if you need a taste tester, count me in. I should have written down my Aunt Rita's chocolate chip cookie recipe when she was alive. I've never tasted any other chocolate chip cookie like it.

      It's always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing. Thanks so much for your note. Enjoy your weekend!

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  9. As you know, my memoir (as all memoirs) is focused around ten years of my life, which is all while traveling. But, I grew up in a different country and am still a Belgian citizen, so there are MANY customs and traditions I can pull from. Except, it’s not a theme in this memoir, so I keep it to a few words here and there, to set the stage or reflect where I’m coming from.

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  10. Absolutely, Liesbet. Your experiences growing up in Belgium probably just set the stage for your adult life of travel on the high seas. I imagine you have many customs and traditions to share. Maybe they will be the topic of your next manuscript. By the way, it took ten years for me to finish my undergraduate degree going part time. Ten of my children's growing up years.

    You know what you are doing, Liesbet. I can't wait to read your memoir. It's always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing. Thanks so much for your note. Be healthy and safe!

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  11. I like reading memoirs and enjoy reading about the differences in culture and experiences.

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  12. I so agree. Learning about another's experiences or about another's culture is truly fascinating. Thank you so much for your comment here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your week and be safe!

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  14. Hello and welcome to Adventures in Writing, Marry!
    Thank you so much for your kind words here at Adventures in Writing. Enjoy your weekend!

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