newton’s third law

i happened to be in the kitchen when my mom was reading about the cookies. hearing when she laughed (and when she didn’t) was illuminating. i was sort of disappointed when she failed to laugh at my favorite pic (the one of bro-in-law T’s cookie) until i asked her why and she informed me she had skipped right over it. it wasn’t because she didn’t like it, but rather because she’s still learning how to work her new iPhone.

watching a reader’s reaction while they’re reading my writing was new to me. people have commented to me post-read and i LOVE that, but it’s not quite the same as witnessing it firsthand. probably because the latter is more raw. the reader doesn’t have time to form a politically correct opinion or decide which words will soothe my writer’s ego. i am thankful for the chance not to have smoke blown up my arse even if the reaction wasn’t 100% what i wanted.

it means i have to work harder.

and then, later, i came across a reaction i wasn’t expecting, nor do i think i was supposed to see. i picked up sister E’s phone (to try out Siri) and was blown away when i saw her background picture. it was of a page from THE SCORPIO RACES, which is one of my favorite books from 2011. she had read it over the christmas break (because i gave it to her) and i gathered that she wasn’t in love with it like i was. that’s fine and dandy and that’s why there are a jillion books out there in the world, each for a separate kind of reader.

but i can’t help but think that she tried just a bit harder to like it because i did. that she took a picture of the page in an effort to find out what made it so irresistible to me. maybe it’s egotistical of me to think that. maybe she really did love it like i did. but maybe she just loves me, and that’s some kind of wonderful.

 

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12 Responses to “newton’s third law”

  1. LindaG. Says:

    That IS some kind of wonderful. :)

    My crit partners and I leave comments right in the ms as we read, noting everything that makes laugh, smile, cry, or whatever, along with any suggestions for improvement. It really helps me to know exactly where people laugh, for instance. That kind of feedback is priceless.

    • abby mumford Says:

      What a lovely practice. I think I’m going to adopt that when I write critiques b/c that type of feedback was way more helpful than I realized.

  2. Adriana Kirilova Says:

    Did you oversell the Scorpio Races? :)

    I applaud your bravery — allowing real-time feedback. That’s tough. Useful, as you point out, but nerve-wracking.

    • abby mumford Says:

      Afraid I oversold it, yes. I guess pebbsie was an unusual case.

      And yes! Real time feedback is nerve wracking but unbelievably helpful.

  3. emily Says:

    :)

    • abby mumford Says:

      Didn’t know I saw that, did you?

      • Emily Says:

        Didn’t know it warranted a blog post. :) and btdubbs, yes I tried a little harder to like it because I knew how much you enjoyed it, but the pic of the book is my favorite line because it’s when Sean becomes consciously aware of how much he truly loves Kate. Enough that he wants her to love the thing most dear to him :) oh look at me being all psychologyyy :)

  4. Karla Nellenbach Says:

    don’t worry abbs. i never think about sparing your feelings when i remark on your writings. cuz thats how meanies (like me) roll.

    i’m just saying

  5. currently overbooked myself Says:

    I totally agree… I’d much rather enjoy some music with some friends in person… cooking out, at a concert, or even better on a road trip. Lack of feedback and responses are crushing! Nothing better than experiencing it together!

    • abby mumford Says:

      Now, see. That’s interesting. I never thought about it like that, but yeah, standing in front of an adoring crowd or being part of the adoring crowd is unbelievable.

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