Wednesday, September 19, 2012

How Your Mother Is Always Right

It might take most of your life to come to the conclusion that your mother is always right. (Well, almost always) Many times, when mothers suggest or advise, we don't listen at first, but inevitably we conclude, that well, yes, they were right.

This was true for me almost three years ago. My kids and I were visiting my parents during a break for school and I was talking books with my mom. I had just finished writing a manuscript and was mulling over story ideas. She suggested I write a novel about the mythology of indigenous people. "Why don't you write something about Mayan myths," she said. My family is from Guatemala, and we are descendants of the Mayan people.

Right away I waved off her suggestion. I don't know why; maybe it's just what we do. However, it didn't take me too long to realize that yes, my mother was right! As I drove home that afternoon, I kept thinking about her suggestion. It is a two and a half drive home from my parents', so I had some great thinking time. I love to think when I drive. During that drive, I shut off any music or audio book I might have ordinarily listened to. All I wanted to do was think. And the ideas came full and fast. I could barely take in all the details that I had flying through my head, and since I was driving, I couldn't write them down. By the time I got home, I had the story mapped out in my head.

As soon as I got home, I wrote down some details, and then it was time for the research. I researched the mythology of several indigenous people before I settled on the Incas. Some of the Inca folklore seemed to fit the ideas I had been creating in my head during the drive. That is how my story was born--with one well-placed suggestion by my mother, a two and a half hour drive, and some Internet research.

As I delved further into the Inca mythology, I loved the idea of taking some facets of their mythology and adding my own invented ideas to that mythology.

That story idea was born almost three years ago. Now, my story is complete, and I am so happy that my YA novel, The Huaca, will be published in May. A huaca (pronounced waca) is an object that represents something revered. Huaca is a word from the Quechua language, a native American language of South America.

My story, of course, wouldn't exist without my mother's wonderful suggestion. So, remember, next time you are about to wave off your mother's suggestion, chances are she's probably right. Just listen to her.

In my next post, I'll answer the often-asked question:  "So, what is your book about?"


Rearun said...

Marcia, I'm so looking forward to reading your book. Lately, I've been reading a lot of YA books and find the genre to be much more fascinating than the YA books I read as a teen. I love the idea of weaving mythology from your own heritage into the story.

Marcia Mickelson said...

Hey Andrea. I love YA so much now too, and it's nothing like what we had growing up, right. What are some books you've read lately. I'm always looking for good YA recommendations.

Rearun said...

My thirteen year old and I really enjoyed the Matched series by Allie Condie. Of course, Hunger Games was awsome. Didn't like the final book though.

Marcia Mickelson said...

I love Matched; I haven't had a chance to read the second one yet, but it's on my list. I loved Hunger Games too, and it took me a while to get through Mockingjay too. It was not my favorite at all.