So I'm taking that leap. I have my book idea and I'm going to start working on it.
It's so sparse and hollow right now...I have what seems to be a sort of skeleton made out of ideas. Characters, names, cities, families, etc. I need to flesh it out, make it three-dimensional. Make it real.
I need some help, my friends. I am seeking out a few people who wouldn't mind letting me pick their brains a wee bit. Nothing awful, of course. It can be done via email, over the phone, or if you happen to live in my neck of the woods, over coffee or margaritas.
If you are a woman, or know of a woman, who has lost her husband I want to chat with you or her.
By "lost" I mean lost. If he was there before, but now he's gone? That's what I'm talking about. I lost mine in the conventional sense (and by conventional I mean he slipped and fell into a tar pit of Secretary), but there are so many other ways to lose a husband. So many ways to be left.
Illness, accident...that type of reason. Perhaps your husband is still physically here on this earth, you didn't lose him to another person but rather an addiction, or mental illness. I'd like to talk to you, too.
I promise that I will keep whatever you share with me confidential. I promise that I will not judge you, or pity you, or patronize you.
These are the things I want to know: how you reacted when faced with the news. How you handled your family, his family. How you parented before, during and after. How you talk about your loss with your kids, and with your family. Did you manage financially...or did you have to scrap everything and start over?
I want to know how your children have fared. Do they talk about it, or do they internalize? Have you had discipline problems, emotional issues, sibling troubles? Did one child have a harder time dealing with it, did one not seem to be fazed? How did they interact with you in the beginning? And how are they now?
I want to know what you did to cope with the pain. Did you lean on religion? Friends? Booze? Food? Sex? Did you turn to exercise, shopping, gambling? Did you lash out or curl up in a ball? Remember, I'm not going to judge anyone about anything. I slept with a mullet-wearing felon, remember? I am the last person on earth to be castin' any stones.
Please pass this on. You can reach me several ways:
email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Send a message through facebook
Or you can just reply to me here on Blogger.
I should let you know up front that my book is a work of fiction. No actual names or situations will be used. Anything you share with me will be between us. One of my characters may react to something sort of how you did, or cope kind of like you did, but it will not be you.
I already know how bad it sucks to be abandoned in the middle of a life, what it's like to console kids who wake up to find their world cracked in half. I know what it's like to go solo to parties and school conferences and confirmations and concerts. I've gone from happy housewife to ex-wife losing her house, and if you're a regular reader, you know how I've handled it (and how I haven't, some of the time).
But all I know is how it feels for ME. I want to know what it's been like for YOU.
I can't have every character in my book be a snarky, chubby, t.v. lovin', emotional eating recluse, can I?
Thank you, in advance, for any insight you're able to give me.