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Ever since I was a little girl, probably my daughter's age (almost 5), I have loved to read. Not long after that, my love for writing was born. It didn't matter what I was reading or writing. I could be reading the back of the cereal box during breakfast, or the shampoo bottle in the bathroom. The feeling of my eyes rolling over letters, words, sentences...was all I needed.
As for writing, I found the feeling of putting pen to paper very soothing. As the years went by and life became more computerized I found myself writing less and less and my handwriting deteriorating. This cartoon from The Oatmeal sums it up for me.
English was always my favorite subject in school. OK, English and Science. A lot if it has to do with awesome teachers. One in particular comes to mind. I had her for 7th and 8th grade Enlish, Yearbook, and Journalism.
Naturally, with this love of the written word comes a deep desire to write a book or novel. The problem was, I didn't really know what to write about. That all changed in November of 2011 when I received a jury summons. I was sure I would just call in on Friday afternoon and get the message they don't need me. That's what has happened to me all but twice previously.
In a way, at that time, I was kind of HOPING I'd actually have to serve. Work was incredibly stressful and a forced day off, even at the court house, was sounding pretty good. I could just sit in the jury room and read a book all day, right? That's not exactly how went down. Not even on day one when you're waiting to see if you get called.
My book reading was curtailed by recognizing a gal from work who I hadn't seen in years due to telecommuting. I was happy to see her and we had a very nice chat. We both had loved ones who had suffered with cancer. Our talk was very theraputic for both of us.
At the end of the day, her group got sent home, but my group had to come back. The rest, as they say, is history. What I learned in that court room rocked that world. My naiive, ignorant, head in the sands perspective of my world and the small town I lived in came undone. I mean, it got blown completely apart.
Maybe I watch too much CSI and Law & Order, but the trial process was nothing like I expected. For one major thing, I expected some amount of actual, physical evidence. Nope. We didn't even get to read the autopsy report. We, the jurors, were expected to deliberate based on testimony of some pretty shady characters.
The whole experience had such a profound impact on my life, that I immediatly wanted to write about it. Of course, I had to wait 90 days. At the time I thought that was the perfect amount of time to get it written and publish on Kindle on day 91. Suffice to say, that didn't exactly happen. Life really got in the way. That's what happens when you work from home, have a young child, husband, AND a mentally disabled man you take care of. Not to mention stressful, sometimes impossible deadlines at work. Add to that working a part time business and teaching Zumba two days a week!
Now the mental patient is gone. His condition worsened and we could no longer care for him. He's now a ward of the county public guardian's office. I've moved two time zones away, I only have one job, no Zumba or hair salon, and no friends nearby. My excuses for not getting my story written are gone. I try to tangle myself up as to whether I should just write my story, or if I should turn it into a work of fiction about the seedy cast of characters and use my imagination to fill in the blanks.
What I'm thinking about doing is writing my story first, then the fiction piece. I would release the fiction, "based on a true story," first and release my own story later.
Why would I blog about this now? Two years later? To begin with, my bucket list is hot on my mind right now, what with my Belt Buckles, Blue Jeans, and Bucket List post and all. Plus, I discovered that NaNoWriMo (short for National Novel Writing Month) begins today. What a cool way to get this thing done! It may or may not get completed, especially with the holidays heating up. I figure at least it will move me forward, getting me closer to my goal than I'd be at the end of the month if I didn't sign up.
As is my usual M.O. to bite off more than I can chew, I also noticed it's also NaBloPoMo (National Blog Post Month), in which participating bloggers commit to blogging SOMETHING every day.I'm already writing anyway, what's a few more words, right?