The Writing Father

Over at Forbes, Susannah Breslin, a GMP contributor, pays tribute to her father, James E.B. Breslin, who died 15 years ago. Breslin talks about how she couldn’t come to terms with her career as a writer until after her father, also an accomplished writer, passed away.

She writes:

I didn’t really become a writer in my own mind until my father died. When he was alive, his shadow was so long, I feared I could never outrun it. After he died, I saw a chance for myself, that maybe there was room for me to walk in his shoes. Of course, his presence remained. I was haunted. I was the prodigal son who had returned too late.

My grandmother wanted me to be a boy. She knit me blue outfits before I was born. I wasn’t a boy, though. I was a girl. As a child, I idolized my father. I didn’t want to be me, I wanted to be him, and years later I would pick up his life. Now I spend my days at a keyboard. I am a writer. This is the anxiety of my influence.

She then goes on to talk about the impossibility of using writing to recreate those who’ve passed. Check out the full piece here.

—Photo Flickr/Mar Estrama

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