Writing: Fiction Phobias

Well, a good part of my Saturday evening was spent in Urgent Care with my son. He had a small fever, rash, and was limping, but hadn’t been injured in anyway. Ugh. He seems like he’s much better today, but we go back to the Dr. this afternoon. The whole thing got me thinking about themes in fiction, and what I will and won’t write about.


I’m not a superstitious person by any means. I’ve opened umbrellas indoors, walked under ladders, stepped on cracks, petted black cats, and broken mirrors, all without the slightest twinge. (Well, maybe the mirror gave me a teeny-tiny twinge. I mean, come on seven years is a LONG time!) But I’ve got one huge superstition that involves writing and, to some extent, reading as well.


Have you ever read Handle with Care by Jodi Picoult? It’s an excellent book, one I would highly recommend. The synopsis from Jodi’s website reads: “When Charlotte and Sean O’Keefe’s daughter, Willow, is born with severe osteogenesis imperfecta, they are devastated – she will suffer hundreds of broken bones as she grows, a lifetime of pain.”

Stupid me, I read it while I was six months pregnant with my son. For the remaining three months, I had a secret, hidden, but very strong fear that he would be born with osteogenesis imperfecta. (He’s fine, by the way, beautiful and wonderful!) I know, right? You probably just laughed out loud at me.

I haven’t had any more problems with books I’ve read, but I’ve found there are some topics I won’t write about, manly involving children, illness, and death, all because I have some vaguely discomforting idea that I might be tempting fate. Like someone is sitting there, monitoring me and thinking, “You’re not allowed to be too happy, and you’ve passed the allowable threshold of happiness, so now we have to take it all away.”

So I’ve revealed my writing superstitions. How about you? Do you have any?




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