letters / memory / men / mom / NaNoWriMo / neurotic thinking / novel / writing

Everyone’s Past

I have finished my rough draft of this year’s NaNoWriMo novel, and I started with the first three chapters and notes my mother wrote before she died. The story is about a relationship she had. A couple years ago I made contact with this man from her past and he wrote me a letter about their relationship. It is odd to try and look back on what I experienced and piece together with what my mother and what he told me. These stories do no match up–but that is real life not a novel. I’m trying to make a novel.

So, here is a tiny piece of the letter he wrote me about two years ago. That would be 2008, and I lived with him and my mother from 1981 to 1982 when I was 12 to 13 years old. I took out a few specific references because I am not truly comfortable sharing other people’s words. But to clarify, this fellow taught a college class on death and dying. It was very popular. He was very popular. And anyway, Mom titled her novel The Death Man, so perhaps that gives you an idea of her thoughts when she started her novel. So. Here is what he wrote about finding out about my mother’s death and the years since.

I cried and cried then, and I often do now. About 13 years ago, doing some research for my NDE group that I have in the ——- area (you remember I was the death & dying guy in ——–), I came across a young woman who claimed to be a medium. I’ve seen these people before, and have been absolutely amazed by them. So, I checked her out. Little did I know that she would tell me all about your mother, and that she would “speak for” your mother who was there in the room. I won’t go into all the protocol I use to check veracity, but I can tell you it was as real as I am. But just to be sure, I sent some of the top ——- scientists to her and a top trial attorney to her. They all came back as amazed as I was. ——- (the medium) and I are now very close friends, and she knows when she can talk to me “for” your mother and when it would just floor me with emotion. But she assures me your mother is with me much of the time, and that we will be together again.

Fifty-thousand words and am not sure what this novel I’ve written from all this is really about.

4 thoughts on “Everyone’s Past

  1. What would make you sure? What would be the thing that makes you know what it’s about? I guess you telling me it’s a fictionalized work based on some stuff your mom wrote about this guy seems like something to me, but I’m not walking in your shoes.

    I find this interesting because I have a hard time telling anyone what anything I’ve written is about. Seeing someone else struggle with it makes me realize it may not be as easy as I thought.

    Hope you had a great and happy Thanksgiving. 🙂

    • It is not easy for me. This novel is particularly difficult because so much real life is in it, but because of that–what is it about? Because it is based on a real life, it is like saying what that life was about–and that is too complicated for me to sort through.

  2. Maybe it’s more therapy for you than being “about” something. Like a diary sort of. Getting the thoughts and feeling on paper so you don’t have to keep them in your head anymore. Maybe this is all you will do with it. Maybe not. Did you accomplish what you set out to?

    I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving. 🙂 And congrats with being done with NaNo10. 🙂

    • Writing is therapy in a way. Sure. But then it has to be a story for other people to read. That’s where my explanations fall short.

      I hope you and Darc and a lovely Thanksgiving too!

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