Feedback from family

January 23, 2015

Perhaps one of the strangest things about publishing Wage Slave Rebellion is the feedback I’ve gotten from my family.

In my family, I’m a bit of an odd duck—no one else even reads fantasy, much less writes it. They were always a bit bewildered by my anime blogging, I think, but that was easy to deal with—they’ve never seen the shows, nor will they, so there’s no reason for them to read any of my posts. They just accepted that it was something I liked to do and moved on.

A book, though, is a different matter, and family members who don’t normally read fantasy decided to give it a shot. Which is heartening, but strange as well. What if they don’t like it? It wouldn’t bother me, to be honest, because they’re not in my target market. It’s feedback I have no idea how to process, save for at face value. So that’s what I did.

My aunt may have been the first non-beta reader or editor to give me feedback, and she liked it. She said it was fun to read about a different world. Has a new fantasy fan been born!? No, probably not, but I smiled all the same.

Others have responded with a mixture of admiration and vicarious pride, and moderate confusion that I would spend so much time on this as well. Like I said, I’m the weird one. I’m used to it.

But perhaps the best feedback I got was from my mom. She recently told me that she had only just started reading it, and that she was surprised because, as she put it, “it was like a real book.”

Not exactly swimming praise, eh? Though actually, I think it is. I know exactly what she means.

While many of you have known me only as a writer, either here or at Random Curiosity, to her I’ve always been her son, and she knew me for many years before this writing thing came around. She’s trying to rectify the image she holds of me as her baby boy with the man who has written a book, one not unlike the books she used to give that boy when he was younger.

It’s easy to think that the great authors were always writing. To us, they are only authors, and even if we were to learn about their childhoods, it would all be filtered through the lens of “How They Became An Author.”

But my mom picked up the book that her son wrote, started reading it, and thought to herself, “This is a real book.” I understand exactly where she’s coming from, because I have the same reaction. Occasionally I’ll read snatches of it when I’m jogging my memory on various details, and I’ll think to myself, “Hey, this is kind of good.”

To those who knew me long before I was an author, it’s amazing that it’s any kind of good. Not because they doubted me, but because they had an image of me in their minds that didn’t include “author” as part of it. They knew me before this was ever a goal, and know that I’m not this unobtainable literary creature that authors so often appear to be.

If that’s true of me, it could be true of you as well.

As always, thank you for using my Amazon Affiliate link (info).

By Stephen W. Gee

Author of Wage Slave Rebellion, Freelance Heroics, and about two good blog posts out of a hundred.

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