Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Boy on the Porch: Fiction Enters 'Real Life'

When I wrote The Boy on the Porch, I was still living in western New York, with no plans to move, but by the time the book was finished, my husband and I were moving to Maine, following other family members, including two beloved grandchildren.

In The Boy on the Porch, a boy rides a cow. I do not know where that came from. However, several months after moving to Maine, my granddaughter joined 4-H and fell in love with cows.  She liked to sit or lie on their backs after feeding and grooming them:

Mind you, I don't think she had ever mentioned cows before this, nor had I ever heard of a child riding a cow before I wrote The Boy on the Porch.
In The Boy on the Porch, a boy is found asleep on a porch.  A week after we moved to Maine, I went out onto our porch and discovered a young boy curled up in a chair:

Okay, this one is not so strange, as I knew the boy, my grandson, but I had a moment's flash of that phrase "the boy on the porch" that initiated the whole book.

This is the story of the mystery of a child ('mystery' in several senses), and it is the story of the ways in which children and adults shape each other. 

My own children and grandchildren and all my students were mysteries (in many senses) to me, and I'm fairly certain we have shaped each other along the way.




  1. I love how things like this fall together!

  2. um.hm. So true. So beautifully stated. xo

  3. Bonjour chère amie,

    Certains signes parfois nous interrogent... Il faut être attentif, ils nous guident tous les jours...
    Je suis certaine que votre livre doit être passionnant.
    Merci pour le partage des ces merveilleuses photos.

    Gros bisous

  4. Maybe, writers like you are especially sensitive and feel things before they happen?..

  5. You WON't believe this. I too have fallen asleep on a porch. Amazing. And you end up writing about it. Simply astounding!

  6. Ahhhhh Sharon, it was just all in your head!

  7. I so understand how those snippets and flashes just seem to meld together... have a wonderful weekend!

  8. This post, especially the photo of your granddaughter sparked a journal entry for me. I've had a love affair with cows since I was three years old. It was a great way to reminisce.

  9. Sharon, I just love this, & I do think the connections are magical...I agree with Malyss too...&, keeping your Unifinished Angel in mind, I do view this as a sort of angel energy... Merci, R.

  10. Oh, and the Beloved grandchildren & the Mysteries that are there for us to appreciate in life & people, I love that...

  11. Hello Sharon,
    My name is Amber. I'm a huge fan of your books and just finished with your latest one: "The Boy on the Porch".
    I absolutely loved it! Jacob is such a lovable character and easy to relate to. He's so lively and innocent.
    I also play music and create art. Probably not as well as Jacob's is described as, but it makes me happy.
    This book is one of my new favorites. And I hope it touches the soul of everyone who reads it as it has mine.


    25yrs. old / Indiana USA

  12. Love this post! And I adored The Boy on the Porch.