Perspiring a Story

Perspiring a Story

After months of crazy weather we long for the predictability of summer. We welcome hot days, the outdoors and vacations. I wrote a story about summer in the Pen & Keyboard anthology, published in November, when fall was giving way to winter. I relived a memory of decades ago, when relatively footloose and fancy free, I spent a summer at day camp in an old Medici hunting lodge, cleverly disguised as a villa. Reading it is like biting into a ripe peach, the kind that is perfectly sweet and soft enough to hit the spot on a hot day. You don’t even mind the juice dripping down your arm.

That memory was my inspiration. However, before the story could reach maturity in my mind, I had to perspire. There were long frostbiting hours staring at the screen. The landscape of my mind seemed barren. I scrambled to search for an idea under the coat of insecurity of the blank document. The strong winds of impostor syndrome froze any thought that emerged above the seemingly infertile ground.  When all seemed lost and I was ready to succumb to resignation, green sprouts started to poke up here and there. Images and feelings pushed through the thawing soil. They clamored to be attended to. I watered them with words. I fed them from the spring of past experiences. They grew as I trellised them into shape. When they were strong enough to withstand a little more force, I pruned and pinched any unruly vines and the creative lymph coursed through the main stalk. The story bloomed and matured into the final fruit, an offering for your enjoyment.