The Gift of Giving
As a kid, I never understood why my parents didn’t much care what I got them for the holidays. Not that I was too worried about it, sadly. My family wasn’t well-off, but we followed the American tradition of a pile of packages. Joy in excess. Waking up at the crack of dawn and tearing downstairs to dive into whatever loot was under the tree—that’s where the fun was. In consuming. Lots.
Or that’s how it seemed.
As an adult, things are different. I can see the frantic pace of our society and the way we frame our holidays. I can also see a truth that a lot of others saw long before me: The look of wonder on your child’s face when you got them just what they want or need. The time put in to make an offering the very best. The successfully braving the crowds if you’re, um, a last-minute type person. All of these are far more fulfilling than any physical gift received, or certainly any gift that doesn’t show the same thought and care in return.
And clearer to me now is the fact that so many in a pile of gifts fall to the wayside, becoming clutter more than prized possessions. And so I refute the often well-intentioned idea that more is more, and the childhood sensibility that getting is more fun than giving.
Writing is communicating. It’s connecting. It’s giving—or it should be. It’s offering the joy of a well-earned HEA, the tension of a well-crafted build-up, the wisdom and empathy eked from living another’s well-described life. And so I say that every author must be a parent. Skip the piles of plastic junk in order to offer “more.” Take the time to hone, craft, develop. Make every book you write the one that is loved for years to come.