Silence is golden, so they say. I am wondering who are ‘they’? I live a really quiet day-to-day. Even when working, there is noise from the office and the electronics and people talking about their complaint of the day, but for me specifically, my work day is quiet, silent. That’s how it must be because my work is about others. It is about listening and hearing. I ask people their problem and why it’s a problem, why it might have become a problem and they we set about trying to solve the problem.
But at home, my world is more than quiet. When the boys are not with me, it is silent. While I can turn on the television or dock my iPod, this is no different than the bird noise outside or the train that pushes down the tracks off CR 235. After a few weekends of silence, the space becomes oppressive. You want to get out from under it. I talk to myself. I talk to other people, often having long conversations about all kinds of things. It helps if the person with whom I am conversing is not likely to talk to me any time soon because I forget that they haven’t really been in on the conversation.
I think this fantasy dialogue is the foundation of my next book. I am having a dialogue about loss, grief, trust, love and I am trying to figure out how to convey these things when my protagonist is silent and private and guarded. She isn’t like me. If you walk up to me and ask me what I find beautiful, I’ll tell you. My protagonist is far more reluctant, distant and difficult to engage. I think that I slightly envy her, yet I am beginning to realize, she’s not tolerant of her silence; she doesn’t have an easy companion with the quietude. She is having a private dialogue in her own head with the person she has lost, a person no one sees. When will she be ready to have that dialogue with a real person? Ah, and there is the story.