Finding Pieces of the Writing Puzzle

Sometime last year, just after the collapse of my band (The Sofa Kings), I had this vision of creating something different now that I was not attached to a group. The new project would be a story of a life of a character told through freeform poetry and original songs and it would stretch from childhood to senior citizen. Although it is never named, the character suffers from a variety of Asperger’s, which makes it difficult for him to connect with the world around him.

But there is this girl ….

The poems came quickly and formed the spine of the story. I began working on songs to go with it and for some time, I was collaborating with a friend on some recordings. That didn’t seem to gell and we both abandoned the project and, except for now and then, our collaboration (on friendly terms).

I shelved the whole thing for a few months because I was tired of it and needed some space. This week, I returned to the story and began doing some recording myself, trying to lay down tracks for the 12 or so songs and recording the podcasts of the poems. I felt as if I were stepping back into an old book.

But I still foresee a narrative problem with the story. There are too many gaps. I purposely have left many holes in the life story because I want the reader/listener to have to reach and think and come to their own conclusions. But I noticed too many holes and wondered what to do. This is part of what led me to step away earlier this year.

Yesterday, I had one of those “why didn’t I think of that before” moments and realized that the voice of the girl was missing and that she could be used to shine a light from another perspective. Her story is being written in prose, as short fiction pieces.

I feel happy to have found a solution to a vexing problem and am viewing the character swirling around in my head.

Peace (in the solution),

  1. The concept of your story is very cool. I have a cousin with Asperger’s, who is preparing for his senior year in college. Growing up (and likely still) he was teased and never really had a group of friends, except for one girl he met in grade school. She helped shepherd him through the travails of high school, stuck up for him in front of bullies, and still hangs out with him when they return from college. He and his parents are very thankful for her friendship. Fitting in is still a struggle for him, but he knows how to work hard how to find help.

    • Thanks, Mike. I struggle with not stereotyping my character and hope I can do my character some justice. I appreciate the story of the friend, too. I’ll keep your story in mind as I develop mine.

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