Reading Habits of Authors’ Families

I have the best critique group in the world. We only meet once a month but when we meet — watch out! Bonny Becker, Kathryn Galbraith, Sylvie Hossack, Dave Patneaude and myself nudge and nourish one another in so many ways.

Yesterday, we celebrated Bonny’s Golden Kite with her.

Bonny’s thinking about the new shelf she needs for all her awards

The only camera on hand was my phone so the photo’s not great but I think it still captures Bonny’s joy (and ours!).

The award in Kathryn’s capable hands — can you read Bonny’s name?

We also celebrated the first ARCs of Dave’s forthcoming book, Epitaph Road.
Watch out, Suzanne Collins!

I gotta tell you – this book is going to be big! Action, adventure and lots of food-for-thought in a near-future setting. Someone asked if his (college-age) kids had read the book yet and he said no; his family doesn’t read his books until they come out. We got to talking and it turns out none of our families do! (though Neil did read Hattie in ms. right before it came out but that was a unique situation).

I’m curious about you — do any of your family members read your works in progress? Do they read ARCs? Or do they wait until you get on Oprah before they read your book?

No Responses to “Reading Habits of Authors’ Families”

  1. Suzanne Williams

    Interesting question, Kirby. My daughter used to read my works in progress when she was younger and living at home. She was a good critiquer too. My husband reads and critiques on occasion–when I ask him to, and usually when I don’t have time to send a story through my writing group. (Or when I want a male POV on a story, since my writing group is an all-female group.) Some of my published books he’s never read. Though he did read one of my Princess Power books when it came out in a German translation, just so he could practice his German!

  2. michellemarkel

    I run manuscripts past my husband, an anthropologist, and if possible I show them to my college age daughters (both well-read, and good writers). They’re great at giving me general feedback.

  3. Martha Brockenbrough

    My husband reads my stuff and gives surprisingly good feedback (surprising because he picks up a LOT of craft stuff for a guy who isn’t living this every day).

    My kids read my picture books. That’s about it!

  4. Liesl

    Hey Kirby! Remember me? Long lost ICL student. Someone mentioned your blog on another blog I follow and of course I had to check it out.

    Interesting question. My family begs me to let them read my stuff but I am so reluctant. I did promise my husband that he could read first when I was ready. I trust his opinion above anyone else. But I think the rest will have to wait or never be satisfied. If it’s not worthy to be published I don’t want them reading anyway.

  5. Kirby Larson

    Liesl, so good to hear from you and so glad to hear you’re still writing.

    Kim, Martha, Michelle, Larissa, and Suzanne — thanks for sharing. Don’t you love knowing how other writers work? It’s better than reading People!