Well, actually I've written 3 of them. The first two barely past chapter 2 or 3, though #2 is still up there in my head somewhere. The last I wrote is several hundred paperback-page equivalents, in about 20 long chapters. That last one had promise, but it includes a bit of a mystery and since I don't read mysteries I couldn't figure out who done it nor why, so I skipped that chapter and wrote the last 2 instead. A year or so later, I figured out who and why, but I never went back to write the prose. It suddenly occurred to me the other day that I had probably lost it when my hard drive crashed in January. Yes, BUT I'd saved it twice on 3.5" floppies. Those I still have. After a scare with having to convert from Word Perfect to Word, I got it copied to my new hard drive. In doing so I learned just how long ago I wrote it: 1991-1992. THAT long??
Yet I remembered every word as if it was just last night I typed thought on keyboard. Turns of phrases that still linger in my brain, little scenes and quirky characters of no importance that I wrote just to see if I could. A warm and soppy ending that no matter how many times I read it, I still get warm & tender tears.
I knew at once that it is a story I could not write today. That was almost 1/3 of a lifetime ago when I was at one of those cross-roads in life. My daughter had gone off to college a year or two before. I was ready for and looking forward to new experiences. That was back when I still had certain expectations and dreams that still had a chance of coming true. But, they never did. I am at a much different place in my life now. In some ways it was interesting going back and remembering what was going on at the time. In other ways depressing to realize all those years had passed with so little to actually show for them, dreams and expectations from 1992 that never materialized or came true. And never will. Somewhere along the way they simply disappeared into the mists of some alternate universe for some other Linda to achieve and enjoy. In this one they just disappeared. Many with torrents of tears. Others with resignation and the knowledge that most of us are not the masters of our universe, merely bits of star dust that drift aimlessly on the solar winds seemingly forever. Some are fortunate to land in fertile lands and flourish and experience fully. Some bounce from rocky outcrops to sterile soils, from no where to plant even a tentative toe to getting knocked about willy nilly. Somewhere along the way I simply quit dreaming. At times just getting through each day became the only goal I could hope for. Nowadays, it frequently seems my only goal and hope is to get through one major hurdle or crisis before the next one hits.
It was interesting to read my book again, but it's left me in such a out of time/out of place mood that I wish perhaps I had not. The inevitable next crisis hasn't helped.