The Magic of writing
I am writing this immediately after finishing my last article, because something amazing happened; something that I wanted to share with all of you. I am going to talk about a specific theme to be inserted in my boring plot and the mysterious event around its development. Read the last article to know what this boring plot is. At some point, I will insert this very short story into the plot to regain momentum and to keep the reader's attention. I will be doing this, after adapting my anecdote to a relevant narrative. My point is to show you all how some sort of Magic seems to be behind the exercise of writing. Examples, like the following, happen to me all the time when I am writing.
As you may discover later, my novel has the appearance of a thriller that takes place in the Middle Ages. Nevertheless, its true identity is based on real-life events. The nature of the main premise in this novel is psychological and it is highly biographical. The character, George, mentioned in the dialogue that was transcribed in the last article, is composed of the memories of two particular orphans who I met in my life.Every theme of my novel has multiple short stories or dialogues which develop a specific part of the more general theme. They act like subthemes. Previously, I had spread the subthemes across the book: this subtheme goes in chapter 3, this subtheme belongs to chapter 5 and so on. Hence, before starting to write the first page, I knew exactly what I wanted to talk about in the first chapter. From the last article, you may also know by now, that I would try to find a convenient way to distribute these subthemes throughout the plotline in order to form a wavy line from the dramatic point of view.
This is how I knew in advance that, at some point in the first chapter, I would be writing about an anecdote from my memory when I was 5 or 6-year-old. It impressed me so much that it has been one of the most vivid memories of my childhood. I thought that I would use this anecdote to explain why George became part of the castle and almost a brother to Philip, who loved and protected him. It will also induce in the reader some sympathy for Philip, which is necessary for my dramatic purposes.
I grew up in the jungle. My father was a surgeon who worked with some missionaries. He passed most of the time in the hospital. My mother also worked in the hospital, so I remained at the only kindergarten in the village until my parents were able to pick me up. There is where I became friends with Jorge and Enrique, two orphans who lived at the kindergarten.
The first time I saw the "house" they had built, I was astonished. I thought it would be so nice to go inside of this one-room-house, made of pieces of wood planks. These planks were made of different kinds of wood. They had different colors as well, from dark gray to a reddish-brown. Most of them had the same length and width. They were leftovers from the carpentry of the missionaries and had been donated to the kindergarten for the kids to play with them.
Their house had only one door and one window. The house leaned against the outside wall of the kindergarten building becoming a wall of the little house.. The most amazing thing about the house was the fact that the planks did not have any attachments to each other. The house was constructed like pieces of domino: they were placed one over the other in perfect equilibrium. That is why part of the fun was getting inside without causing the house to fall down.
One afternoon, the light of the Equatorial sun painted everything with a golden color. The long hill and its forest in front of us were lit up like a body made of bronze. We had already put the planks back into their box as if they should be protected from the dark of the night. We were seated on the ground, leaning our backs against the building and facing the hill.
I wondered how nice it would be in that forest at night while the full moon lights up everything and I said it aloud. Jorge said, "yes, it is beautiful, indeed." He immediately satisfied my surprise with a story. Jorge told us about the adventures he had when his father came to visit him at night. In a very quiet way, without waking up the rest of the kids, he takes him for a ride by the hill. They walk from place to place looking at the different kinds of trees. There are stones as tall as them. They see deer, cows, birds and they even can hear the noises of a puma coming from the depth of the forest. At the end of the night, before dawn, his father returns him to the kindergarten as quiet as he took him. Nobody notices that he has been gone all night long and has come back on time for breakfast.
In my very childish perception of reality, it was clear to me that he invented the stories. Nevertheless, in my equally childish consciousness, I did not dare to say a word, because I thought, "That is what children without parents would do: fly through the air to be happy in the forest with their parents who had abandoned them."
The Magical Moment
The above story, I told you, happened many many years ago when I was six. Three days after writing my last article during which I thought a lot of the first friend I can recall, Jorge, my mother called me. She wanted me to store some pictures together with the rest of my belongings that I am taking with me on my move back to the USA. On top of a small pile of old photographs, I could see Jorge looking directly at me from inside the picture, at the very playground of the kindergarten where we met. His smile filled me with joy and sadness, but I knew I had his approval.
Immediately after I recognized him, I remembered his story. A cold shiver ran down my spine. I had remembered and treasured that story throughout my life as if somebody told me that it will become an important part of a novel that I would write 50 yeas later.
Welcome to the Magical Mystery World of writing!