What My Mother, And Walt, Didn’t Tell Me

Life is messy. I don’t know one person who is living the fairy tale that Walt and his tribe, lack of social media, and the sheltering love of parents helped us to envisioned as children. Disagreements were once about how we were affected. Now they included our families, our communities and our world’s state, and these disputes are not easily forgotten with a hug.  Disease, accidents, and death are no longer something that happens to someone else. Financial responsibility is more than adding dimes to a piggy bank. Social manners go beyond saying please and thank you. The news is aired 24/7, and viewed by children. Life is messy.

My grandmother had a saying. If everyone in the room tossed their problems into a pile and then were told to go pick one out, most would pick their own.  

Why would we do that? Because we know what we’re dealing with, we have experience handling it, and we have a sense where we’re headed. Starting over with new problems requires a lot of energy, physically and mentally. Many don’t want to do that. A few don’t have any more stamina left to give. The rare person will give up a less important problem and take on a life threatening one. They are heroes.

Readers love to escape their world. They want to read about other peoples’ problems and learn how they resolve them. They don’t want to read about a fairytale life. They know that world doesn’t exist.  They want to connect with your characters and causing your reader to sympathize with your characters is a way to connect. Give your readers a hero or heroine to cheer for.


Life will always be messy, especially in great works.  





Autumn Jordon is an awarding-winning author of Romantic mystery/suspense and contemporary romance. Check out her sexy U.S. Marshals in the C.U.F.F. series, or fall in love with her characters in the Perfect Love Series. 




17 responses to “What My Mother, And Walt, Didn’t Tell Me”

  1. Jennifer Bray-Weber says:

    Great post, Autumn! I love your grandmother’s quote. I hadn’t heard it before, but it is absolutely true. I’m going to pass those wise words along to my kids.


    • Thanks, Jenn. Grammy was a wise woman. From their generation, I learned to work hard, smile and hold my head high, and keep putting one foot forward. I think I infuse those traits in my characters.

  2. Tamara Hogan says:

    –> A few don’t have any more stamina left to give.

    Autumn, for me, this really hit the nail on the head. Between managing physical health, tending to emotional health as best I can, trying to make a political difference, and keeping the home and family fires buring, I’m utterly freaking exhausted. It’s time for another round of ruthless prioritization!

    One foot in front of the other, my sisters! Hugs to all who are struggling.

    • Awesome, Tamara. I love connecting with others. Thank you for saying so.

      I think this blog and it’s community is one of the reasons I don’t say the hell with it and throw all my passion into a minimum wage job. Well, the nice comments I’ve received from readers helps too. Deep breathe. Eyes forward total a goal. 1,2,3 act on it. Then as Vivi said on Friday, reward your effort.

  3. Heather McCollum says:

    I love your grandmother! She was very wise.
    Yes, life is messy. I do think that I am somehow given what I can handle, even if it doesn’t feel like I am handling it well. The human condition involves pain and struggle. It just does. But it also involves great joy.
    Thanks for the great wisdom and post.

    • I know that saying. ie; The creator only gives you as much as you can handle. He give me wide shoulders. I always had trouble finding clothing to fit. I now know why he did.

      Bitter times make the good times sweeter. Another saying.

      Thanks, Heather.

  4. Laurie Kellogg says:

    I LOVE your grandmother’s saying. I’m guessing it’s probably true. Better the devil you know.

  5. Tracy Brody says:

    Love your grandmother’s saying. Good to remember.

  6. I’m smiling because I’m struggling to write a fairy tale right now (complete with a prince!), but I love the idea of thinking of it that way – that our power as authors is in perspective and resolution. Love that.

    • You know I would love to peek into Cinderella and Prince Charming’s lives after several years of marriage. Give them the problems stress caused by running a kingdom now under attack by the wicked lord down the road. Top with a two year old and changing the diapers of a newborn. Oh the sleepless nights. Plus Cindy’s fairy godmother doesn’t pick up her magical phone. Yes there could be loads of tension, but also life lessons to be shown.

      Good luck with your story. WINK

  7. Love your grandmother’s saying. She sounds like a wise woman. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Addison Fox says:


    Your grandmother and my grandmother must have known each other, because mind used to say the same thing!!

    And I agree – while we are telling stories in a world where things work out, no one’s expecting a fairy tale. Part of the hope and healing that comes from fiction acknowledges that life is real and messy and hard!


    • Hey, that might mean we sisters beyond the RSS.LOL

      Exactly. Fictional characters show us how to gather strength, stand up for our ideals, show our feelings without harm to others and to uphold morals.

  9. Gwyn says:

    No stamina left to give. Right on the money, yet we keep on keepin’ on, wrestling demons, health, problems, and whatever else comes our way with smiles and assurances everything’s fine because that’s what we do.

    Your granny was a wise woman.


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