What surprises you about people?

For people I grew up with, it’s probably not surprising that I ended up writing books. I started writing short stories when I was 10 and wrote one I was particularly proud of, called The Violet, when I was 14. I shared it with my friends, who loved it. Jumping from short story writing to novel writing is a big leap – one I didn’t take for a few decades – but it still isn’t a complete shock.

What cracks me up is people I know now. When they find out I’ve published novels, they’re surprised. But what surprises them more is that my books are actually good. I think when we know someone, we don’t expect them to have hidden talents. So, I’ve come to accept that people I know read one of my books as a favor to me. They don’t expect much from it. Then I get phone calls, “I just read your book, and I loved it,” said in a very incredulous tone. “Wow, I didn’t know you were such a good writer.”

I decided not to take offense at the preconceived ideas people have, especially because they didn’t let those ideas stop them from actually reading the book. Now, if I could just get the others to read the book they bought …


About Mary Ellen Bramwell

I am an author, wife and mother.
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