A blog about writing and all things story…
Today I’m sitting at home with a neck brace on and not enjoying the degenerative disc disease in my neck. For one thing it makes it difficult to type. Oh well, we all have issues.
Anyway….in working on my novel, sometimes I lose my muse, my passion for the story, my oomph to get to the finish line, because, let’s face it; editing is not fun nor is it creative. Frankly, it sucks!
Remembering and understanding why we write is so important when trying to hold fast to a theme that resonates within us and throughout our story. When I get caught up in the plot, I sometimes forget why I’m writing in the first place. I need to reconnect. It’s healing, and helpful.
My story, Far From The Moon has everything to do with my father, his service in the Korean War, and his love for the Oregon Coast. The coast was our happy place. Dad was his happiest when there. It was our escape from the chaos and madness of our life in the city. We were liberated there. To this day I can climb Neahkahnie Mountain, hike its lush trails, hide out in the windswept pines of its cliffs and be free. As children that freedom came at great cost. As an adult, I try to not remember the cost, only the ocean breeze in my hair, the smell of lavender, my father signing Dean Martin songs by the camp fire, his coffee percolating on the Coleman stove, the pigeons scavenging for food in the distance, the smell of salt air, the promise of sand dollars along the sea shore, a day of adventuring and being alone with nature.
You see my father was not the camp fire whistling, Dean Martin singing guy we knew on the coast, when we were in the city. In the city he was different man all together. Tortured, mean, drunk and still fighting a war we knew nothing about except that we, too, were its victims. Dad was two men. When I’m at the coast I recall the man I loved with all my heart and soul – the man who, because of his two selves, is the source, the seed, the nexus of most of my writing. I think we write to understand. I may never understand the two wolves that fought for existence beneath my father’s scared skin, the war that haunted him or the anger he felt when the noise of his life grew too loud. But I will always understand his love of the Oregon Coast. His true spirit was always there, so there – instead of the family plot – is where we buried him a few years back. As the oldest child it was my decision. I chose to honor the place where he was at peace.
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By Miri Elm
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(re)Living History, with occasional attempts at humor and the rare pot-luck subject. Sorry, it's BYOB. All I have is Hamm's.
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