The funny thing about children is how many other things are compared to them. For example, pets, plants, employees, vehicles, books and yes, characters we create in our books. Having been happily childless until I was thirty-eight (and a half) I did in fact share my life with a small rescue dog pre-Bisky as well as create four novels with a variety of characters (albeit all with the same names, per my earlier posting). I can truthfully say I never uttered the statement (or thought) that Freeway the rescue dog was ‘like my child’. Some might argue that this was because he was strikingly unattractive and ill-behaved, but I would argue back that despite this, I did harbor extremely fond sentiments towards Freeway. However, I was aware that even though I had not procreated, I was pretty sure that my feelings toward Freeway varied significantly from how I would feel about an actual human I had produced from my body. And even if it was the same thing, I was a little worried about offending people who had human children. I have very close friends, on the other hand, who swear their pets ARE (or are like) their children. I think they really feel this way, and both they and the pets seem quite happy. I guess it’s an individual thing because I have referred to my characters as ‘my babies’ from time to time. As in, “I’m killing off my babies today.” Sometimes I get a little sensitive about the harm I’m doing to my characters, even though I know it’s going to turn out well for them in the end (usually). Now that I’m a parent to human children as well as characters, I realize the main difference is that, despite how it sometimes feel, I have complete control over what happens to my characters and how they turn out. I unfortunately do not have that much control over my offspring – which is probably a good thing So the next question (and post) will be… if you are a writer, which ‘child’ is your favorite?