Friday, August 29, 2014

The Engineer and the Author

Huh, sounds like a title for a romance novel. Anyway...

My husband is an engineer and works in an industry that most hippies picket. (I say that lovingly. I'm a hippie.) Needless to say, his artistic side is seriously lacking. His ability to be creative is limited to picking out paint colors for the house, and painting walls. Most of his wardrobe is made up of neutral colors with a bit of light blue thrown in. The man can't even see a straight line.

And then there's me. I admit my fashion sense is lacking but I have Pinterest at my disposal. I can't draw or paint like my siblings can but I can sew and, obviously, write. We're pretty much opposites and agree that if we had met as children, we would not have been friends. (I played with dolls. He beheaded dolls. You get the idea.)

However, my husband loves me and is supportive of my writing. He understands that this is something I love, even if he doesn't understand why I love it. He listens to me ramble on about plot and characters and I listen to him talk about cars and job sites and paperwork. We're a weird couple but we love each other and it works.

Even though my husband can't string a creative sentence together, I do ask for his opinion on certain things- namely, what kind of car the characters should drive. Our conversations go something like this:

Me: What kind of car would a parent buy their two teenage daughters to share?
Him: Is this Europe or America?
Me: [answers] Oh, and it needs to do this, this and this. I'm thinking it's green.
Him: What year does your story take place?
Me: What does that matter?
Him: (long suffering sigh) Okay, it's THIS CAR, with this engine and does this.
Me: Is that a four door? Because I'm seeing it as a four door.
Him: Yeah. Now, make sure you put THIS MAKE, THIS MODEL and THESE ENGINE SPECS in when you talk about the car.
Me: I don't need that many details in the novel. The story isn't about the car!
Him: Your readers will want to know all the details. Doesn't the car have an important role in the book?
Me: No. No it doesn't...
Him: You could MAKE it have an important role!
Me: Go back to watching Doctor Who, honey.

I love that he's interested and supportive. I really couldn't do this without him! Still, I don't think a book about cars is in my future. (I think Pixar took care of that, in movie form.) However, if you ever read my stories and find a paragraph extolling the virtues of a car, you'll know my husband influenced that!

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