Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Chickens and Novels

No, I haven't lost my mind. Yes, I know you're thinking that chickens and novels have nothing in common. However, I've come to realize that raising chickens and writing a novel do, in fact, have a lot in common.

Two weeks ago one of my hens laid her first egg. I wasn't expecting any of them to start laying until mid- to late August, but there it was, our first egg. It took her a few days after that before she started laying one perfect egg each day. Now we just wait on the other two hens to catch up with her.

So what does that have to do with novels?

You raise these little fluffy chicks, putting all your care and attention into them, making sure they have all the ingredients they need to become healthy and productive egg layers, and then you toss them out into the world hoping for the best. Just biding your time, waiting for your payback in return for all you've given.

And then the big day arrives! Your first egg(s)! All the care you've put into your chickens has now paid off. And if you're anything like me, you coo and praise your girls each morning as you collect the lovely little gifts they've left for you.

Still not getting how it's like a novel? Well, let me see.

You put your heart and soul into writing your story. You make sure your characters behave (or don't) according to plan. Their perilous journey makes everyone life difficult, but eventually it comes to completion and the story is over. You edit, and edit, and edit, and then you have someone else edit, before you edit again. You pay attention to every little detail, putting all your care and attention into it, making sure it has all the ingredients needed for a healthy and productive future on the book market.

Sound familiar?

In the end, you just have to let it fly and wait to see if all your hard work is going to pay off. And when it does, you coo and praise it for all the lovely little gifts it leaves for you in the shape of loyal readers and royalty checks each month.

Pictured above are the first four eggs my hen left for me. We made a pancake and eggs breakfast with them, and they tasted better than any eggs I've ever had. :)