There’s something about writing a novel that brings out the protective mother in me.
My real baby (ten-years old and almost as tall as me) is asleep as I write this, I hope, the cat firmly in place in the hollow behind her legs and an array of stuffed animals packed tightly along the side and end of her bed.
But it’s my other baby to whom I’m referring, that other baby who is growing almost as quickly, page after page stacked up and making me feel both very proud and incredibly fearful (just like my real (big) baby does), all at the same time. And now it’s time for me to start to let go.
I’m about to send the first seventy or so pages to my supervisor. She’s seen bits and pieces before, of course, but this feels entirely different, not least because of all the time and angst I’ve invested in writing the damn thing.
What if she doesn’t like it?
It’s a little bit like waving my daughter off as she goes to camp, hoping she’ll behave and enjoy herself but suspecting that when she comes back she won’t be exactly the same person she was before.