There are times in life when I’m reminded why I like to live inside the world I create on paper. Last week was one of those times. A young woman died of cancer, and while I didn’t know this woman, I know her family. The entire community felt the crush of this family’s grief. All we could do was weep with them and wonder hopelessly how we could help ease their pain.
This is why I need to escape from reality and be in control of something. In real life, I’m not in control. Not really, anyway. Too many things can happen. Death can happen.
While writing The Grave Winner, I tried to imagine what it would be like to lose my mom since my main character had just lost hers. I didn’t want to face that kind of reality, and after awhile I didn’t have to since my MC took over for me. But at the beginning when I was trying to find my MC’s voice, I wrote what I imagined it would feel like. And it broke my heart.
I kept repeating, “This isn’t real. This isn’t real” with tears streaming down my cheeks. Thank goodness it wasn’t real. But I was in control of my fictional world. The MC’s mom’s death happened because I willed it to happen.
Real life doesn’t work like that, which is why real life sucks. And so does cancer.
P.S. Sorry for the downer post. Next week, I’ll puke up rainbows like this guy: