History of my novel, Friday 10:03 (Part 8)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

(This series begins here.)

Somewhere in a box, I have the first written pages of what has become my novel, Friday 10:03. When I came upon them a few years ago, it surprised because they were in teleplay form and I couldn’t remember ever writing anything as a script. It was in the typeface of the electric typewriter I bought in 1970 before beginning my rewrite for Of Runners and Poets, and which I lost in a burglary sixteen years later.

I can only suppose when I might have written it. I’m guessing final exams week for UCLA's Winter Quarter, and then Easter vacation, 1971. Somehow, during the pressure and stimulation of final exams, I invariably got the inspiration for some great story, and rather than studying for my exams, I wrote.

It had been an awkward Winter for me. I had come away from Thanksgiving thinking I had an understanding with a young lady that we would eventually be married. She seemed not to have had the same understanding. In fact, I did not hear from her during December, nor most of January. I made so many trips to my empty mailbox, however, that I began to notice the person sorting mail into the boxes from the other side. Then, during the Easter holidays, I took this new girl to the beach for a day. We sat at the end of the runway at LAX, with jets taking off over our heads, and I shared what I had written. She liked it.

However, less than one year previously, Vicki had experienced a deep religious turn-around, and more than anything else, that is what she wanted to talk about. I enjoyed the discussion, but her beliefs seemed to preclude us building a deeper relationship. I couldn’t see myself with a ‘religious fanatic.’ When it came time to say goodbye at her door, I said, “You’re a wonderful girl, and someday you will make someone a wonderful wife, but it probably won’t be me.”

To my astonishment, she gave me the same look in the eye that I had only seen from a girl once before, and that when I thought I’d been getting a life-commitment from the previous young lady. I went home scratching my head in wonder.

And I’m still scratching my head in wonder, because Vicki and I have now been married for 34 years, and she has been invested in seeing this novel through to completion since that first day at the beach.

Amazing love, how can it be?

Posted by Brian at 3:27 PM  


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