At Twenty-One #OpenBookBlogHop #MondayMusings #Inspiration

Welcome to another edition of Open Book Blog Hop. This week’s question is: Where were you at 21? How does that reflect in your writing today?

When I was twenty-one in 1982, I entered my junior year at Rocky Mountain College, located in Billings, Montana, about 150 miles north of Sheridan, Wyoming, where I’ve lived since 1973. After attending the local college and living at home for two years, going to school away from home was quite an adjustment. Fortunately, it wasn’t that far away, and I came home weekends when I could get transportation.

I never considered a career in writing at the time. This was probably because my mother, may she rest in peace, rewrote most of my school papers, even when I was a student at Sheridan College. She taught English there and apparently didn’t want her fellow faculty members, from whom I took English, to see my less than adequate writing style. Who knows why she rewrote my high school assignments?

Instead of writing, I pursued a career involving music. Long story short, I became a registered music therapist and worked in nursing homes and other senior facilities for years. I didn’t do any serious writing until my mother passed away in 1999.

How about you? What were you doing at twenty-one? If you’re an author, how has that affected your writing? You can click here to participate in this week’s hop and read other bloggers’ responses.

A photo of Abbie smiling in front of a white background. She has short brown hair which is cut short and frames her face. She is wearing a bright red shirt and a dark, flowy scarf swirled with hues of purple, pinks and blues.

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

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Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of three novels, two poetry collections, and a memoir. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at: https://www.abbiejohnsontaylor.com

14 thoughts on “At Twenty-One #OpenBookBlogHop #MondayMusings #Inspiration”

    1. That’s true, but I could have written fiction. I took a creative writing class in high school. Of course, my mother rewrote all the stories I turned in. She should have been a writer. Maybe knowing that writing probably wouldn’t bring in enough income, she decided instead to live vicariously through me. Who knows?

      Liked by 1 person

  1. At 31 – I met my future husband at age 15, married him at age 17. We had our first child at age 19, and that year before she was born we purchased our first house. At age 20, we were expecting our second daughter who arrived just before my 21st birthday. By the time she was 2, we purchased our second home, where we still live today after 61 years of marriage. While I was not writing during those years, I was reading every day – philosophy and classics mostly. I read aloud to my little babies all the time – Shakespeare, and everything else I loved was what they heard from birth.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, my children are readers. Our son is an author and educator. One daughter is a librarian and teacher. the other 3 daughters are readers. One daughter read books to her babies as they were forming in her womb. She would go upstairs to the baby room she had prepared for their arrivals, and she sat in a rocking chair reading books to them. She did this every day before their births.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. This is a wonderful thing that you recognize the importance of storing memories and that there is a certain time when they are ready to harvest. Your material has gestated within you. It seems like you have a treasure chest full of rich and mature life stories to choose from in your writings as a keeper of memories. There is always a right time for us to begin writing and it is an individual matter. When you begin writing, it is the right time for you.

      Liked by 1 person

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