Welcome to my self-indulgent location for the stories (good and bad) that I can't prevent myself from writing. All comments and criticisms welcome. I post on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Lost and Found Blogfest

Today I'm participating in the Lost and Found Blogfest, hosted by Myne Whitman to celebrate her reaching 500 followers. Congratulations, Myne!

As you can see, the task is to write about something you've lost and (re)found. So here's my story. It involves finding two things at different intervals. Two for the price of one :)

WARNING: This story is somewhat personal, discusses dark material, and eludes to violence (though imaginary/from a dream). Please read with caution.

My father and I were very close, especially after I went away to college. So, several years after I graduated, when he was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer on July 3, 2008, I broke. Broke down. Completely. I'm the only child and daddy's little girl, and this destroyed my world. I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. And when he died on October 1—only a couple of days before my birthday—it all got worse. The walking dead seemed animated in comparison to me. I stared at the TV without any idea what I was watching, and lost close to 40 pounds in about three months.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
That's when my nightmares began. One in particular plagued me night after night. I stand on a beach, my jeans rolled up to my knees as the waves swallow my feet over and over. I'm not prepared, though I know what's coming. And from nowhere, I'm attacked. Literally, from thin air. Over and over. I'll spare you the details, but the pain would continue for what seemed like an eternity before I would wake in a cold sweat, sometimes screaming.

This dream tortured me night after night for at least a month. In late November or early December, I realized that the only way for me to take control of the dream would be to write it down. I needed to own it instead of it owning me. So, I did.

This is my first finding. I began writing again. I hadn't written anything beyond term papers in ten years.

Picture courtesy of http://buffy.wikia.com/
This dream became the climax in my epic Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan fiction—sort of. It involved the Buffy crew but added several new characters of my own creation, including my new MC, Edie (see Season 8 for how I could easily do this). I shared the pieces I wrote with fewer than a handful of close friends, and only the parts that were actually written. I jumped around in writing it—a lot—and my outline grew toward War and Peace-length proportions. It became unmanageable, and while I plugged along at it, it grew difficult and tiring to keep all the subplots straight.

The following July (2009), I had another idea, one that has led me to write Fighting Fate (which is its 72,482nd title). Edie and her beach sacrifice snuggled into the recesses of my Documents folder and started gathering dust.

About a week ago, I woke up thinking about Edie and her sacrifice. As my consciousness gathered strength over my dreaming mind, I realized that this story is worth saving. I can rework it, streamline it, remove the Buffy elements, and make it mine. Truly own it like I had wanted to do 2.5 years ago. I rediscovered my story. Now I think I'm going to spend a few months (re)plotting it, and potentially use it for my NaNoWriMo project in November.

Are you participating in Myne's blogfest? I'll be sure to stop by. 
Not participating? What have you lost and found again?


Pk Hrezo said...

Rosie, that is stupendous! What a great way to make lemonade out of lemons! And sorry about your dad, but I'm sure he's proud of what a brave, strong woman you are!

Anonymous said...

Wow, very touching and very brave of you to put it out there :)

LTM said...

omg! That is so fantastic, and congrats on finding your story again! Here's wishing you all the best~ :o) <3

Raquel Byrnes said...

Thanks so much for your kind words about my Nature of Magic Blogfest. I see you have one...I'll put it on my sidebar. =)

Wendy Ewurum (Fabulosity) said...

This is serendipity at her best. I had a wow moment although I couldn't find the dark bit (wink wink).
I can't wait to read your story, honest and truly. I am an avid Buffy, TB, Angel and VD fan. Awesome.

Anonymous said...

Isn't something how time allows us a new perspective on something--so awesome that you've been inspired to salvage this piece! :D

Myne Whitman said...

i was touched reading this, and really glad you found your peace, as I'm sure your dad is proud of you.

Thanks for taking part in the blogfest, and I do look forward to that book.

Talli Roland said...

That is FANTASTIC, Rosie! That's really all I can say. Wow!

Natasha Hanova said...

What a tough journey. Nothing can truly prepare a person for the reality of fatherloss.

I'm so glad you found your writing voice again. I LOVE your writing and look forward to seeing more of it.

BTW -- I'm a Buffy fan too. :-)

Carol Riggs said...

Wow, that's a great way to make use of your old novel, Rosie! Some of my earlier writing was working through some of my own personal stuff too. I will be looking forward to seeing what you come up with in that novel! :)

BBB said...

hi stopping by to see ur writeup for the blogfest
what a story
am so glad u turn it around and used ur demons to move forward
ur dad would be proud

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