I don’t write to be famous, I don’t write to be known, I write because I am and I want to be read. How sad to fill a room with paintings no one sees or play music no one hears. Writing is talking without sound, singing without score and dancing without movement and yet, it is all of them. It is a solitary art conjured from thought and expressed by the need to communicate.

HEAD SLAPS, SPEED BUMPS and LIGHTBULBS, one woman's WTF, oops and ah-ha moments of life.

They were published once, and as every writer knows, once is not enough.

Friday, April 18, 2014

The book in the little black case.

This small suitcase is similar to the little black makeup case which held my mother's manuscript for over twenty-five years. It was discovered in my attic on the eighth anniversary of her death, three days ago. Back up a post or two, and I explain why I am writing about my mother's lost and forgotten novel.

In Chapter two I have met the driver of the car and his ‘cohort’ her word not mine. The use of that word made me smile, it is so my mother. The local police department knows that the two were up to something but not yet sure of just what it was.

In her words.

We spotted them just as they turned onto Oak but almost lost them when they turned down Grove Street. They tried to run after we shoved them off the road into a ditch on the Stanton Highway. We got them though, traveling 90 miles an hour.

In my words.
The men are released and my first thought, do they remember where the bag fell out of the car. Or did they ditch the bag because it was evidence. I want to find out.

She’s clever, my mom the writer, either by design or by circumstance. She lets us in on the death of Tobias before his niece, Martha, or Marty, many miles away and on her way home to him, finds out that he has passed away. The old man was deeply loved by Marty, though he may not have known. Uncle Toby was the last surviving member of Marty’s family. I thought it odd that we are spared Marty’s reaction to the grim news. But, as I thought about how the story is unfolding, it seems right. Maybe my mother didn’t want to dig that deep or maybe it will come up later but for now it works. With her entire family gone, Marty is alone.

Her words.
Her thoughts and memories were more of her friends who attended her tenth birthday party than those of her parents. She wished she had more memories to cling to but as time went on they became less important to her. She still missed them but sometimes she wondered why because she thought of Aunt Carrie and Uncle Tobias as her parents. She looked enough like Aunt Carrie, her mother’s sister, to be her daughter.

My words.
That paragraph, if stemming from imagination only, swims dangerously close to the hint of a secret, born from horror and tragedy within our family.  I am on page 32 and every character she describes, I know who she has modeled, every location I am familiar with, or have been told about. All of it, so far, I can pin down to her past experience. This hint, planted in those few lines, set my mind to wondering; from where in her past did the doubt of parentage emerge.

I am imagining that perhaps this book will answer a question I have been holding close to my heart for decades.


  1. Wow, this seems so surreal and I hope that it answers that burning question for you. I am intrigued by what this may be about.

    1. This thing is either going to be a bust or one hell of a story and I mean ONE hell of a story. I am itching to dive in and read ahead but with the holiday this weekend I have to wait. -got a houseful coming.
      As far as I know this is the first and only book my mother wrote. First novels are almost always autobiographical. If this one is, in part, and I'm beginning to think it might be, we are talking life changing for two generations.
      Perhaps it will let me gain the insight I am lacking or at least put some serious speculation to rest.
      You say you are intrigued, I am bubbling with excitment.