You know the feeling: Work. Sleep. Eat. Bills. Deadlines. Sports. Work. Eat. Sleep. Sports. Bills. Deadlines. Eat. Sports. Bills. Work. Eat. Bills. Deadlines. Sports. Deadlines. Deadlines. Deadlines. Deadlines. Weekend. Deadlines. Weekend. Deadlines. Deadlines.
This is life.
But then, there’s this:
Suddenly you realize that, when everything is said and done, this girl is your legacy, and that if you want her to be successful, you’d better start teaching her how. Oh, it’s easy right now: hold hands while walking, kiss boo-boos, give big hugs. But someday, this little girl won’t want to listen to you, because, well, you’re just dad. How will you reach her when you become just dad?
You do have an advantage though. You’re a writer. If you work hard now, you can create a story with all of the wisdom you’d like to give her, put it between some covers with a fancy title, and, voilá, you have le manuel d’instruction.
It’s almost cliche to say that she will need to read strong female characters to inspire her. How do you find a way, then, to speak to her need to learn, need to grow, and balance that against the need for good literature, and not some formulaic character in a heavily stilted plot. How do you create a character that she will want to emulate, who will exemplify all of the things you want your little girl (who, by this time, won’t be so little any more) to become?
How do you create a heroine worthy of your little girl?
I don’t know yet, but I sure am trying to figure it out. Just as I wanted to be Frodo and Roland Deschaine, I hope to create for Holly a heroine that she will embrace, and when the day comes that I am just dad, the words I’ve given her will act as a mediator between just dad and his little girl.
This will not be a short or easy project, but stay tuned here to follow the journey to create a heroine for my daughter. After all, she’s worth it.