Monday Challenge: All In The Family

Baggage Dept

Some families give you a carry-on. Others get you the whole matched set. (Photo credit: Noël Zia Lee)

Everyone comes from somewhere. Unless you were wished into being*. Even then, someone had to do the wishing.

For most of us, our families were the first influences on our lives and our selves. From mine, I got directness, a good sense of humour, and a certain ‘fuck you’ mindset. Not to mention a healthy dose of silliness and the kind of temper that can scorch the earth for ten feet around. Other people I know got their methodical nature, their reservation**, their eating habits, their philosophical outlook, and a whole train car full of other things. Family is the ultimate baggage, because they got there before anyone else.

Your characters likely have family. Or some analogue. It really depends on your story and your setting. But, unless you’re writing something truly fucking bizarre, there are other people present in that character’s life that shaped them, even if it’s only by accident.

Monday Challenge: write about family. Yours or that of your characters. Write about the people who got their hands on you before anyone else, and how they used that power. Because it is power, at the bottom. Sometimes benign, sometimes not.

And you only usually learn which it is when you grow up.

*If this is what your parents told you, I’ve got some bad news: they lied. And they had sex. Sorry to be the one to break it to you, but that’s probably the least disturbing thing you’re going to learn on the Internet.
**In the sense of being reserved. Not in the sense of having an appointment at a restaurant. Can’t imagine someone inheriting that.

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