When I ran across the photo of the rose, I knew immediately it summed up everything I needed for the piece named, Daddy’s Death. The bud, wilted and drooping, yet the stalk still straight and the leaves green. When we lose a loved one, it is how we feel; as if our essence has been sapped, we’re wilted, our life is crumpling around the edges, and yet, there is still life, and it flows around us. It was so perfect to me, I almost left the title and name off the cover—there was no need for anything else.
The mind of a writer is a strange thing. Or maybe I should qualify that and say the mind of some writers …. Because I can’t speak on behalf of all writers, but I know others who deal with some of the same things I do. My mind is kind of like a co-op with my characters. My stories are character driven, and in order to do that, I need to know how my characters would think, act, talk, feel in any given situation. They live in my head and speak to me to tell me the story line. I feel their emotions … sometimes over and over, in order to capture them on the page.
A couple of weeks ago Takeimi Rao was looking forward to starting high school, or at least that’s what I’d expect from a straight A student. But last week, during a slumber party all her dreams of what she was going to do with her life came to an end.
This is a picture of Samuel Hayes. He died last week, probably because he had too much to drink. He was sixteen-years-old, only a couple years older than me. I didn’t know Samuel. We don’t live in the same town, but his story hit me hard. He looks like a nice guy, and sixteen is too young to die.