Lately blogging has taken a backseat to writing deadlines for paying work and possible paying work. And, those who know and poke fun of my volubility will chortle uncontrollably, also lately I haven’t had much to say.
That alone should be worth writing about…but it’s not.
I was going back through old blog posts the other day to find a recipe I know by heart but still wanted the ‘written down’ version. Unlike some writers, I loathe reading anything I’ve penned once it’s done. So many words, so little time…why re-read mine? But I was struck by my sincere prolific-ness in earlier posts.
Why did I have so much to say previously and so little recently? The aforementioned work is one reason.
What drew me to writing and journalism initially is the love of other people’s stories. Even though I have the joy of making up all the stories my mom and I write now, once upon a time I was a reporter and taught reporting for umpteen years.
This week I’m playing ‘girl reporter’ and interviewing a friend of mine for the West Virginia Writers, Inc. spring newsletter about workshops he’ll be giving at the group’s annual conference this summer.
People are always sharing their tales with me. My older son, Erik, says it’s the invisible neon sign flashing on my forehead that certain folks can see. He’s got it too. So does my friend Karin Fuller, newspaper columnist extraordinaire.
But some stories are not mine to write.
Today a thousand miles away a memorial service was held for the father of one of Erik’s best friends. Paul Becker, father of Benny, Abby, and Nina, died at his home last week.
I knew Paul as an extraordinary father to an extraordinary son. My own son is moving through this week in a trance, wishing he could be with his friend. Another friend, Alex, just had to return to college. He wishes he could be with Benny too. Ironically, childhood friends Alex and Benny attend separate out-of-state colleges across the street from each other.
I got started thinking about all of this looking for a recipe for Alex, who’d planned to bake for his friend what the boys all used to call my ‘magical squares.’
I think today, as in the wonderful book “Like Water for Chocolate,” chocolate chips aren’t the only ingredient in those cookie bars, which I plan also to bake and send off to Rhode Island.
Today this is a tale about loss and love and wishing all stories only had happy endings.