My mother emailed me earlier this morning. She's read the first two posted chapters of "He Nearly Killed the Cat" and while she thinks it's cute, she feels that I need to "begin the hard slog of creating new characters that will engage your audience," as she put it herself.
Mom feels, according to her email, that I should "[r]efuse to connect them (my shiny new characters) to any previous character" and that I should "[f]ind their unique qualities." As an example, she used Homecoming, another original story that I have been working on, on and off, for the last two years.
If you have been with my Facebook page for a while, I wrote about Homecoming in one of my notes. My loving mother (and that is not sarcasm—she does love me and wants only the best for me) believes that those characters are less derivative and therefore more worth my time.
Unfortunately, the Homecoming characters are only one step less derivative than the "He Nearly Killed the Cat" bunch. Sorry, Mom. Guess I fooled you, even though I didn't really mean to. Do you still want me to write Homecoming now, or has my honesty tainted it for you?
I guess that I am also failing in making my point with "He Nearly Killed the Cat" and the Legendbreakers universe in general. What I was trying to say, and what I hope I am still trying to say, is that a story isn't worthless just because it uses elements from other stories.
I know that I'm taking this too hard, that my mother didn't say and doesn't mean that my current work is worthless, just that she feels other things would be more worthwhile. At least, she did when she didn't know that the thing she prefers also drew from my previous work. I don't know how she feels now.
Apologies for the slight emotional dumping nature of this post. I have to go now. It sounds like one of the cats is into something they shouldn't be again. Will do my best to continue writing today—I'll certainly experience worse over my writing career than a slightly critical e-mail from my own mother…