Posted in Writing


I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me if today’s post lacks cohesion. My mind and heart are in several places.

The last week had not been kind. Car repairs, financial uncertainty and health concerns have added to the laundry list of normal everyday stresses and have dominated my waking hours, as well as stubbornly draining my non-waking hours.

In fact, I was just about to email Karen and ask if someone could cover today’s post, when I got a call to tell me about the death of a friend. I’m not sure why I decided to write the post after all. Maybe it’s as simple as knowing that my friend would have berated me for shirking my responsibilities.

His death has shaken me, to be sure. He was not a healthy man, and in fact was taken to the hospital 2 weeks ago. But he had begun to recover. The weight his wife and son were carrying on their shoulders was beginning to lift. And I suppose that all thought he would recover because he was so stubborn.

But it is not the moderate surprise of his death that has shaken me. His son, who has become a rather close friend in the last couple of years, is only seventeen years old—precisely the age at which I lost my own father. I was very close friends with my father, as was this young man with his own father, and all day my thoughts have lingered on the difficulties he will face in becoming a man, without the guidance and support of his father.

It’s a fine challenge for a character—to be thrust into a situation he is unprepared for. But sometimes the things that make good fiction make for a bad reality.

This post was originally posted on Write Anything
where six writers talk about the trials and
tribulations of their writing lives. And each
Tuesday the soapbox belongs to me.

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