It started many many years ago. Before we had kids. Before we were even married. My wife and I loved role-playing games. Specifically, AD&D. We had both grown up with it as kids and young adults, and found that each of us had frequently been called on by friends to be the dungeon master. Which meant, of course, hours upon hours of research, planning, crafting storylines for every possible decision the players might make, rolling up monsters and NPCs and giving them stories and motives, everything it takes to make the game immersive for the players. Right? At least that was my approach.
Then I met my wife, Rose. She could be ready to play within a couple of hours, and no matter what my characters decided to do, she was ready for it. Seamlessly she would wrap one plotline into another, pulling in characters we'd met earlier in the adventure and giving them all of the sudden key roles that brought it all together. When I figured out she was doing it pretty much on the fly, I was nothing less than amazed!
So fast forward several years. We've had kids, we've played some amazing games with them, and invented a world and a storyline that spawned a story to tell. As you might have guessed, we both remembered things differently, had different ideas of how the details ought to be told, and how plotlines should evolve and be wrapped up. Recipe for disaster, right? I can see how it could be for some, truly. Not all marital partnerships are well suited for business or creative partnerships. Something about ours...it just works.
And here's the beautiful thing. That amazing DM mind she has, the ability to see a plotline all the way through to the end, and weave all the subplots right along with it so they all get resolved, that's the backbone of our storytelling. She builds the framework, makes sure it'll hold up in the storms and earthquakes, and then together we make it beautiful. Chapter by chapter, book by book.
But it gets even better than that. Every day when we're sitting across from one another writing, we have that ability to reflect our ideas off each other, to make sure we're consistent with our vision. "Hey, hon, is this consistent with what this character might be thinking?" or "We have this guy doing this thing, what is his motive? What's the backstory that put him here?" And then we're off and running, building background, connecting characters' lives, and making for a genuinely believable and enjoyable story.
In short, I'm blessed to have a writing partner. I'm doubly blessed that she's my partner in everything else as well. She's my inspiration, she keeps me grounded, and when I need to stop screwing around and just get to work...yup that's her too!
We couldn't do this without each other.
Best marital therapy ever!