Windowless

If you enjoy this short piece of writing please take a look at the message which follows. It woulds mean a lot.

My mother meant well, I’m sure she did, but her methods proved unorthodox.
I was by no means a rebel, no scoundrel, not even a tiny bit bad, just misunderstood. Where others would rant and rage, fly off the handle or spout profanities, I daydreamed.
Daydreaming, although a great way to pass the time, never went down well with my mother. She reminded me of it frequently and I still carry the scars.
I was thirteen. She had withdrawn me from school to look after my two younger brothers and two younger sisters. We had no father; he had died in the war. To my siblings, his face was a dream, to me, a fading memory. Mother had not taken the loss well. We took it less well because of it.
And so my daydreaming grew more profound. I would whisk myself away to worlds and times and places and lives that others could never have conceived. I always came back just not necessarily when my mother would have wished.
When John, my youngest brother, had his accident, I had been traveling the Amazon with several natives, a unicorn and two cowboys. I don’t why, that’s why they were called daydreams. John’s only residue of the accident was a slightly twisted arm; mine was rather more horrific.
She locked me away in an attic for three weeks. There was no window, no company, no light, just me, my mind, and the occasional glass of water slipped around the edge of the door.
I emerged from my windowless prison a changed person. Some might have said the boy was gone replaced by a more realistic and bitter young man. I could not deny it.
So why regale my readers with such a personal tale of tragedy, such a drear recollection of childhood: falsities.
I lived the rest of my time in an imbalanced world of feigned dedication and perfect respect. You see, she broke the boy who lived in the day and, instead, made a man who dwelt in the night. I didn’t need a window there. And I never have since.

The end.

I have been contemplating rewriting the book I won my Authonomy Gold Medal with. The story was called The Snow Lily. I did not enjoy my time on that writing site, (I can say that now) the misplaced advice and often bitter commentary. As a result, the moment I got what I needed, my HarperCollins Review, I shelved the story (which by then I’d written a half a second volume of) and couldn’t bear to look at. I’d allowed myself to be influenced by others and swore I never would again. The same reason I no longer care what people say about my writing. There is no harsher critic of me than me and never will be. So what’s this all about you shout. Well, I opened up the story for the first time in three years. And now, as I look at the words that would need to be rewritten completely, I realise the story that so many people loved and voted for was really quite good; the wrong tense, and language to make me cringe, but in essence a unique tale. The Snow Lily was about two Victorian children locked away for reasons unknown, who escaped to freedom of body but never of soul. Should I do it? Should I rewrite that which I thought I’d never ever look at again? Let me know what you think. In my usual fashion, I can’t make my mind up.

Richard

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61 thoughts on “Windowless

  1. “There is no harsher critic of me than me and never will be”

    That right there says it all. The answer lies within you.

    We love every word you write or we would not come back for more. I don’t know if I’ve ever stated this, but I state it now. I love your work. I always have and I always will. Go for it Richard!

  2. For someone that had the honor of reading The Snow Lily … yes. You want to and you are correct — it was a very compelling and heart wrenching story.

  3. I love all your writing, so if I had my druthers, I’d say YES!
    However, it seems that the story is calling to YOU and that would be the compelling reason to pick it up. The excerpt is intriguing, and I would certainly turn the page, my friend.

  4. Hi Richard, that was a lovely piece you shared. I think whether or not you pick up The Snow Lily again will be up to you, but it would be a shame to abandon it because other people made it hard to look at. I think you know that you have a good tale that makes readers feel. So I hope you continue.

  5. Follow your gut Richard, like you always do. You know if it is worth it to you or not. It it were me I probably would because I can’t leave things that interest me alone and like you I my own opinion of my work means more to me that what others may think or feel about it.!

  6. I have found, when it’s work, I’m not ready to revisit something. But if you look at it, and it excites you again, you’re ready. (Still waiting for that moment on the first novel I wrote.)😉

  7. This piece is intriguing, so if The Show Lilly is anything similar I’d say go for it. Often it’s the things we find hard to write that come from the deepest places, and therefore have more power in them.. The self help book I’m writing had nearly done me in, at the end of second edit! I have taken a six week break and gone back to it- and now I’m just really hoping it’s good! Take care.

  8. I haven’t read the first. But if it was not your heart and soul speaking if it was not your exactly feelings and reality ten yes . If for no our reason than to let go of it. I understand what your saying I have a life that most would say is a fiction . I am going to try and vomit it up and spit it out and brush my mind free of it so I can live this time I have left singing with a clean heart.

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