Tonight, we found something good in our neighborhood. A deep-dish restaurant that plays indie rock and has a random picture of Poe overseeing our eating.
Then I came home and killed a character.
I think I'm done for the night. I only wrote a few pages today, not as much as yesterday, but it came a lot easier than it had been. I think I'm unstuck. But I'm just physically sick. It's obvious the character is going to die, but seeing the body just makes it awful.
I lost a friend tonight. Other writers, you'll understand what I mean. The guilt and mourning that comes from killing someone off. People who aren't writers will think we're silly for feeling this way. But I have talked to many authors who are asked, "If you could spend time with your characters, what would you do?", and they shirk. They shiver. They say, "I wouldn't want to face them."
I still wonder if I did the right thing. If this death is going to mean enough to carry on through to the last draft. I wonder if I'll go back on it. I've gone back on deaths before. Especially after the last few years, I don't take death lightly.
But how appropriate, a picture of Poe today. Because I feel my strongest when I write about death. It's a chore to write happy frilly little things with jokes and jabs and quips. But the pain that comes with seeing the body of someone you love ... I think my characters always live on the rim of death, and I don't know why I have to be so gruesome in that way.
I wish I could write cute little fuzzy picture books, but it's never been where my stride is.
I'm sure I'll figure it out. But for now, Orange is the New Black just dropped thirteen shiny new episodes.
What is this?
Dawson is an editor and writer and MFA student at Stonecoast. She writes stuff.