See these little guys? This was their 'before' shot. That was before I planted them in somewhat roomier accommodations. I was too tired to get their "after" shot.
For those that can't recognize my shaky camera artwork, these little guys are tomatoes. They are my pride and joy. I show them almost like a proud grandma would show off pictures of her grandchildren. Really. I eagerly share pictures of them with total strangers.
This is, if you haven't guessed it, the first time I have ever been able to grow tomatoes from seed. I have what is known as "Black thumb."
But when you have a kid who has food allergies, and a lot of processed foods are no longer available, and fresh produce is pretty expensive, growing a garden is what you do.
Also, to put my editor's mind at rest, this was book research as well. My characters will be busy growing tomatoes in my contracted books. Scout's honor.
It's true. A lot of my life and my experiences show up in my books. I don't tattle on other people. But I hate to waste a perfectly good experience. It helps me get the details right. Like the sweat trickling down between my shoulder blades and the crescent of dirt under my fingernails as I potted # 43 of my tomato babies.
Now, granted, most of the things in my books only happen in my head. But I tend to incorporate some of my daily challenges into my characters' daily challenges. Another thing I try to do, but can't always, is to start my book in whatever season I am currently in. That helps me avoid having my character's petunias bloom at the wrong time of year.
I wonder if I'm the only author who does this. Do other authors tuck tidbits of their lives in their books? Do their character share the same interests as they have? Or am I the only one?