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Monday, March 08, 2010

Twelve already?

In less than a week, my eldest will be twelve.

Twelve is kind of a cool age.  We're just on the cusp of teenage attitude (I see this as a warmup) and she is getting more independent every  day.  She likes cooking, has responsibility of the cat, has a great sense of humour and is really starting to branch out with friends.

But twelve marks something that she's wanted for a very long time, and it is hard for me to realize that the time has already come.

You see, I made a promise back in 2006 when I sold my first book and she was...eight.  Oh my gosh, eight.  She said, "Mom, when can I read your books?" And my answer was, "When you're twelve."

She's never forgotten.  So, in a few days when that momentous birthday occurs, one of her presents will be a copy of one of my books.

I'm not sure I'm ready.  Now, I've read all the Twilight books and I usually read the YA stuff that comes into the house before she does (unless it's 9-12, which goes straight to her).  I KNOW that what's in my books is rarely more explicit than that, since I write for Harlequin Romance.  It's more...adult situations, you know?  But then when I look at the chick flicks we've watched, I know she's ready.  I'm just not.  I'm not quite ready for my baby to grow up.  For her to feel like a trip to the mall with friends is more fun than one of our girlie days.  I'm going to miss being the centre of her world.

So maybe the lessons I want her to learn - about being independent, about self-respect, and about love...maybe those will come through in my stories during the times she doesn't quite want to listen.

Now the big question is...which one do I let her read first?

14 comments:

denise said...

I know what you mean. My daughter is turning 15 next month. Boy, it is hard to let them grow up. They are faced with so many temptations. Books are a great escape from real world situations and great place to find out how to handle situations. Why don't you let her read your first book? She can see how you have grown as an author. Don't worry. You will survive.

Kate Walker said...

I don't think you have a thing to worry about. Your books are about giving and honesty and faith (in each other) and commitment and most of all they are about love.

What better things can she learn from her Mum? Far better that she learns about adult love this way than so many of the other stories there are out in the world. You know you will always write a hero worth falling in love with and a heroine who learns to trust her own heart. If it was me, I'd give her a parcel of all of them - and the message she can always come to talk to you about them. Then you can stay with her tthrough your books as she grows up. Because I know she will always have you at the centre of her world even when you are not 'the centre'.

What is they say about if you love someone, set them free. . .

Dina said...

My daughters were not interested in reading when they were younger, but I'd like to think I'd let them try to chose from a sorted lot and see how it went.

Donna Alward said...

Oh this is totally me being selfish. I love our girly times and it makes me lonely thinking about them being more rare as she gets older. Even though I know it's meant to be this way!

Both girls are huge readers though my eldest is harder to please (and my youngest will read ANYTHING, including the cereal box). I am actually enjoying reading a lot of the YA stuff too which is cool. And it gives us something to talk about too...

Christina Hollis said...

Sift through your books, Donna, and remove any you wouldn't feel talking with her about (although I can't imagine there will be any). Then let her choose. It's amazing how the years fly by, isn't it?

Anne MacFarlane said...

This brings back memories of when my girls were this age only a few years ago. The start of letting go. Tough for mom but exciting, too.

Caroline Storer said...

I agree with Kate. Your books are lovely to read and I *think* they will be ok to give your daughter! But oh it is a difficult situation..Caroline x

Pat Cochran said...

I agree with Denise's suggestion.
You should "start at the very
beginning!"

"Happy Birthday" to your sweet
girl!!

Pat Cochran

Donna Alward said...

Well Pat...it's a very good place to start...

LOL

Thanks all. It's a beautiful evening - we're all heading out to walk the doglet! Thanks for stopping by today!

Bev Pettersen said...

Aw, Donna, they grow up so fast. But it's marvellous you write books she can read at 12. And maybe she'll even learn something about life--that's quite a gift! Bet she'll pass it on to her friends and be incredibly proud of her talented mum.

Mary said...

I remember when mine was 12. Mine is now 18. Can't believe how fast it happens.

I love your books and can't think of a single one that a 12 year old couldn't read now a days. I agree with what others have said, start at the beginning and see which one she wants to read after that.

Michele L. said...

Oh isn't it mind boggling how fast they grow up? One day they are the little girl at your side and the next they are a teenager. I agree with the others that you should let them start with your first book. Your write such nice stories that I think they would really enjoy them!

Sue A. said...

I trust that you'll make the right choice, after all you've raised your daughter for twelve years to be the person she is! I can only suggest that you pick the book closest to your heart.

Donna Alward said...

I decided on my first one - Hired By The Cowboy. When I dug out the copy, I opened it up and it was like discovering it all over again! Who knows, maybe I'll re-read it!

I think she'd want to start at the beginning. :-)