This post by L.Leander, Author of Fearless Fiction
I don’t outline my books. I guess you’d call me a spontaneous writer. But I do write out a few notes for reference. The following is how I would write the notes for an autobiography. I could write for years on the memories these facts evoke.
I am the eldest of four children. Two sisters, two years apart, followed me. We got a brother when I was eight and we were all thrilled.
One of my first memories is of sitting on my mother’s lap listening to a book she read to me. She always had time to sit down with any of us to do something we liked.
Another memory is music, falling in love with it when, at the age of two my father put me on a picnic table at our family reunion, picked up his guitar, and said, “Sing for everybody Linda.” And sing I did. I loved it.
My Father was a day run truck driver when I was born. When I turned one, he bought me a teddy bear, came home and told my mom he had quit the trucking job. He couldn’t bear the thought of not seeing me grow up. He got another job the following day that allowed him to be home evenings and weekends. I still have my bear, and although his fur is worn and he has embroidered eyes (because I ate the beaded ones) he still sits on my nightstand to this day, a memory of simpler times and childhood.
When I was five my mother taught me to sew – simple things by hand. It wasn’t long before I moved on to the sewing machine, winning several ribbons in 4-H during my teen years. A friend taught me embroidery, another taught me knitting, and still another taught me to crochet. I feel as if I’ve sewn my whole life and I enjoy each and every project. If you’re interested in learning more about 4-H here is a link:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4-H
Until I was six we lived across from an apple-canning factory. I can still smell the odor of the fresh apples and the decay when the season was done. For my sixth birthday I got a baby buggy and was I excited! So excited, in fact, that I plunked my baby into the buggy and took off for Grandma’s house to show it to her. Grandma lived across a busy highway and when I got to her house she brought me straight home. Like a dog with a bone, I spent the next month staring at our hall closet, where the buggy had been put on a top shelf so that I would learn a lesson. That incident was harder than getting a spanking.
We moved when I was six and again when I was nine. My memories of the first house are great, because there was a lake at the end of our road and even though my Mother couldn’t swim a lick, she took us there every summer day and allowed us to play in the water. I’m sure I got my love of swimming and later, my Certified Red Cross Life Guard badge because of those magical afternoons. When we moved to the next house (a renovated funeral parlor) we spent our summers at Red Cross Swimming lessons, bused back and forth the three miles to the lake. What sunny days those were! Here is a link to the official Red Cross swimming site (although I don’t see the Lifeguard class listed any more. http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/program-highlights/swimming
My sisters and I loved to play dress-up and walk around the block.
Mom took us every once in a while to a thrift store to get things, and one of my aunts regularly gave us clothes, hats, shoes and jewelry to play in. My favorite costume was an evening dress with long gloves to match. It was chartreuse and made of satin. I felt very beautiful (like a princess) every time I wore it.
In the sixth grade I became a cheerleader, something I tried but didn’t like. I’d rather be on the sidelines sneaking a look at whichever book I was reading at the time. Here is a link to some interesting benefits of kids reading books: https://news.search.yahoo.com/search;_ylt=A0LEVylvrLRUe4kAr85XNyoA?p=benefits+of+reading+for+children&.sep=&fr=yfp-t-472
That sixth grade year I also began school music classes. Until that time we had chorus in our classroom for half an hour each morning, belting out such classics as “Oh My Darling Clementine”. I cherished those times. I got a part in a musical put on by our class. It was heady stuff!
In the seventh grade I won the County Spelling Bee. My parents were very proud, and so was I, because I won a book and a trophy to display in my school. Since I inhaled books, as much as the air I breathed, the prize couldn’t have thrilled me more.
When I started band, we didn’t have a lot of money so a friend offered me a clarinet. I played it until I was about 15. We movedagain that year and because I had to give the clarinet back I decided to take drums. The school provided them and I could use a practice board at home. My Dad’s boss offered me an Alto Sax that his sons didn’t want to play, so my band teacher got me started on that, and all through high school I played the drums if we marched in a parade (my sister played drums too), and the Alto Sax when we did concerts. In addition, I played in a 5-piece Recorder ensemble. Our little school band placed top in the Northern Michigan region my senior year and we were elated. My band teacher always made me feel like I could play anything.
I never loved sports, but did well in softball, track, and basketball. Books and music were so much more important.
My best friend was a preacher’s daughter and her family had horses. We had many good times together riding through the fields and woods near her home. Once we even saw a black bear! Lucky for me I was a pretty good rider by then because my horse got spooked and headed off to no man’s land with me hanging on like a cocklebur.
I watched stars on summer nights, played in the leaves in the fall and tobogganed and ice skated in the winter with my siblings. My favorite season was spring, because I could get my bike out of the garage and ride all over, inhaling the sweet scent of apple blossoms and lilacs and the sharp tang of pine trees. There was still a chill in the air and wild geese honked overhead as they came back to the pond where they summered. I loved watching the trees bud and the thought that the end of school was near (even though I loved school).
There is so much more I could tell you about my childhood but I’ll stop here. As I write this and remember, I realize what a fairy-tale childhood I had. A mom and dad, three siblings, Freckles, the dog, and a cat. But most of all we were blessed with love.
Do you take time to remember your past? What are some of your favorite childhood memories? Do you use them in your writing? I do.
Books by L.Leander:
INZARED, Queen of the Elephant Riders
INZARED, The Fortune Teller (Book Two)
Video Trailer for INZARED, Queen of the Elephant Riders:
Video Trailer for INZARED, The Fortune Teller
13 Extreme Tips to Self Publishing
13 Extreme Tips to Marketing an eBook
L.Leander’s Reviews and Interviews: http://lleandersreviewsandinterviews.wordpress.com/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/L.-Leander/e/B008IVRNU8
Facebook Page: http://facebook.com/lleanderbooks