Archive for June 13, 2016

SOMETIMES I GET DISCOURAGED   20 comments

Writing is a tough job, but even tougher when my topic is so personal. I’m working on “My Father’s House,” wanting from the bottom of my heart to convey the character of the man so many admired. To me he was my father – aren’t all father’s like that? But to my High School boyfriends, as they confessed to me later in life, he was the reason why they wanted to date me. “I wanted to take you out because I admired your father.” One of them who became an architect, added his admiration for our house.

I suppose I should wonder what that says about me. But I do know what it says about my father. He was a special man in the eyes of some who saw him from an outside-the-family perspective.

So why do I get discouraged? Because I want to convey his character and I’m having trouble doing that. Right now I want to help the potential reader know the hurt and challenge he felt when people laughed at him for his Swedish accent and ways. I want them to appreciate his determination to overcome that while improving his career position by saving income from less-than-desirable work to pay for college. I want them to understand his ultimate pride in his perfect English. Except for the Swedish lilt, his accent became perfectly American. I want people to rejoice with him in the small victory when he used the word “nuance,” and was laughed at for using a foreign word. Picture the satisfaction when he opened Webster’s Dictionary to point out the English word.

I want people to recognize and feel the presence of specific folks in their own lives as they read this phase of my father’s story. (My Italian father-in law’s story was of the same kind of courage – the kind of courage so many immigrants brought with them.)

There’s a whole lifetime I want to convey as the writing goes on, but this is what my heart and head are working on right now.

I get discouraged, but I’ll be digging in today to work on it. I guess I’ll have to invoke my father’s spirit and know that the thing to do with a problem is to do something about the problem.

So now, in my imagination, I’ve pulled in encouragement from many of you. Thank you.

 

 

 

Posted June 13, 2016 by Mona Gustafson Affinito in Uncategorized

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