While I’ve never been poverty stricken I did grow up in a very frugal environment and raised both our kids on a fairly tight budget. It’s only been in the past couple of years that I’ve felt less worried about finances and more concerned with health issues and aging.
In conversation not too long ago, someone asked me when I felt I had “made it.” It’s a fair question; for a writer, there are a lot of milestones that could be the points at which one feels one has made it. Selling that first book is an obvious one (selling the second book, a less obvious but no less relevant one), as is the first time you are nominated for an award, or win one, or hit a bestseller list, or get a starred review in the trades. Getting a movie or TV option is a big one. Seeing someone you don’t know reading a book of yours out in the world. Any of these are perfectly good moments to stop and say, hey, I guess I’ve made it.
My moment isn’t any one of those. My moment came a couple of years ago, when I was driving out of…
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