The Motherly Writer’s Award

Some time ago I was given the Evil Writer’s Award.  Now Belle @ Worlds of Ink and Paper has given me the Motherly Writer’s Award…I suppose that makes me the wicked stepmother, then?

Belle deserves special thanks, as she is in fact the creator of this tag!  The rules are as follows:

  • Thank the person who tagged you and link to Belle’s original post
  • Take the picture
  • Answer the motherly writer questions
  • Tag at least three bloggers at the end


  1. How motherly are you to your characters? What sort of a mother? Strict but attentive? Spoiling and soft? Tender but cautious? Or perhaps you are one of those writer mothers who is not so motherly?

I suppose I am motherly towards my characters in the way that I do love them, even the minor ones who get one or two scenes.  I firmly discipline poor behaviour, and I often wish I could breach worlds to give my creations hugs

On the other hand…I tend to take favourites, I encourage the same behaviour I will later chastise, and I let my children handle sharp things and explosives.

   “You’re seriously going to let me handle one of those strange blasting whatever-they-are things?  My aim’s not perfect, but I’m sure I can rise to the occasion!” –from an old story…which featured several ka-booms

  1. Do you fret about your characters’ fates? Their dates? Whether or not they get kids of their own?

 I wouldn’t say that I fret about my characters’ fates.  But as characters become more real to me, the more I will learn about their fates, dates, and whether or not they get kids of their own.

Then I fret that I’m going too far beyond the story.

  1. Are you sad when your characters are hurt? How sad on a level from one to ten are you when one of your characters in injured physically or emotionally? Spiritually? What about if they die?

Yes- when they hurt, I hurt too.  Physical pain seems to be the least damaging, though, and my sadness level doesn’t usually get higher than 7.  My sadness level on emotional pain is much greater, even reaching 9 at times.  After all, emotional pain is harder to address, and things such as fear and loneliness seem to go a little deeper than a burn or broken ribs.  I’m not sure how to rate death, since I’m usually resigned to the character’s death and my sadness is normally overshadowed by the sadness for the remaining character’s reaction over the death.   Sadness over spiritual pain is also a tricky thing to rate.  If my characters come out of it stronger, then I am happy to put them through a ‘dark night of the soul’.  But if they lose their soul then my sadness level is very high.

  1. Are you aggressive or do you retaliate when someone insults or doesn’t like your characters/book? To what extent?

I’m naturally troubled when someone insults or doesn’t like my characters/book.  They are little pieces of me, after all.  But I know I can’t retaliate.  Maybe they’ve found a valid reason to dislike what I’ve made, and I had better pay attention.

  1. Which of your characters do you “baby” the most?

I’m not entirely sure how to answer this question.  Do you mean ‘which ones are your pride and joy’ or ‘which ones do you coddle’?  As it turns out, the characters that I fuss over and follow around the most are also the ones that go through the most disasters.

“Aw, look at my adorable new story character!  He’s such a dear, I love him to pieces already!  Now, I’m going to shove him into a situation I’d be too scared to face myself.”– from my notebook

  1. Which one of your characters do you let fend for themselves the most?

Those would have to be the poor characters that belong in stories with the trickiest plots.  That’s when I become a bit of seat-of-the-pants writer.  “My word, looks as if you’re in quite the dilemma there… can’t wait to see what you do about it.”

  1. Do you tend to cling more to your older children and stories, or your youngest ones?

Definitely the younger ones.  I still value my older stories and characters, but the newer ones are more interesting and more refined.

  1. Do your characters have any habits or styles that you disapprove of?

Absolutely! Please keep in mind that I don’t endorse all the things my characters do/say/believe, even the protagonists!  For example, I don’t approve of the sassy remarks Kinn and Rieve constantly throw at each other.

But I try to never write a character whistling, because that is one thing I simply cannot tolerate.

  1. Which of your characters are you most proud of?

Tah portraitThis little guy.  Meet Tah.  I’ve put him through the wringer, but he’s still a good kid and never stays bitter for too long.

  1. How many of your main characters have actual mothers?

Most of my main characters have mothers, actually- even if they aren’t seen.  (Tah is one of the few motherless characters I’ve written.)

  1. How many of your main characters are mothers?

Hmm.  Not enough.  I have some minor characters that are mothers, though.

  1. Have you ever had pressure to kill off a character? Have you ever downright refused?

No to both questions.

  1. How many of your characters are children?

Hmm.  Not enough.  Do you count the characters that start off as children, but age throughout the story?

  1. Are you loath to kill characters? How much so?

I hope you don’t mind, but I’m going to cheat and quote myself:

“I may be hesitant, sad even, to actually write down the death.  But after a bit I resign myself and go ahead.

….Although I must admit that I get a certain thrill by the thought that perhaps, one day, someone will read about the character’s death and that it will make them think, make them feel- and better yet, cry.”

  1. Are you biased for your own characters?

Well, when I see other people’s characters it’s usually the end result, so they’re all exciting and perfect.  Meanwhile I see my characters at their best AND at their worst.  But they’re mine, I’ve watched them grow, and that makes them precious.

  1. How well do you care for your characters?

I don’t keep them safe…but I’ll give them treats occasionally.

  1. And do you intend to be more motherly, or less motherly with your characters in the future?

Maybe I’ll give them more treats.


Thank you for this award, Belle!

I now pass it to:

Madeline @ Short & Snappy, Tracey @ Adventure Awaits, and Faith @ The Writer’s Song


8 thoughts on “The Motherly Writer’s Award

  1. Dear Shennachie ~ Congratulations on this award! Your reflections on how you feel when your characters are hurt – deliniating physical, emotional, and spiritual hurts – resonates deeply. You are a true “mother”. Of course, I love reading all your reflections and seeing your brilliant drawings!


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