Thursday, May 04, 2006

Inspiration From the Grave

By Nichole Giles

Have you ever had a story idea that popped into your brain, and even though you didn’t have time to write the story, the idea stayed and stayed and stayed? Recently a story has been swimming around in my brain, its little head bobbing to the surface daily screaming, “Write me! Write me!”

I haven’t taken the time. I’ve been in the middle of several other projects and haven’t wanted to start a new one until I finished some of the others. So I’ve let it sit, and simmer, and stay, until I just can’t leave it alone anymore.

I haven’t finished my other projects, but I get the distinct feeling that my grandfather’s spirit is urging me, insisting that I write his story. Not his life story, although he led a truly interesting life. It will be the story of just one of the amazing things that happened to him, that he survived, and (can you believe it?) was able to tell his grandchildren. I’m thinking I’ll write it as nonfiction, although the additional freedom fiction would allow is tempting. The bottom line is, my grandfather wants me to write this story, and so I am going to start working on it today.

The minute I made the decision to go ahead with this project, I could feel my grandfather’s approval. It was as if his spirit was saying, “You write this story and I’ll make sure someone wants to read it.”

I got that eerie, “If you build it, they will come,” feeling. Should that have freaked me out a little? Maybe. I’ve given a lot of thought to death lately. Last week marked the anniversary of the death of my mother-in-law, who was very dear to me. My grandfather also died in April not many years ago. Now a fellow writer, one I didn’t know well personally except through his amazing work, will share this anniversary of death with those I love.

April is looked upon as a month of life. Spring, the season of blooming flowers and baby animals, and birth. But for me it is also becoming a poignant month of reflection. I have been reflecting on what my grandchildren will know about me. The things I choose to write can give them a glimpse into my life, my heart, and my soul. No wonder we’re taught to keep journals.

In the month of the anniversary of his death, my grandfather asked me to write his story. I think it’s about time someone did.

1 comment:

Darvell Hunt said...

This sounds familiar. Not the part about grandfathers, but about the stories in our heads. I've had this "problem" many times and the story always refuses to stop bouncing around inside my brain until I finally pour it out of my head by writing it down.

Once it's on paper, it's no longer in my head. It's kind of like Dumbledore's pensieve.

Nichole, I believe if you write this, it will give your soul release. Besides, people can't see a story in your head. You have to write it down to share it. And I think members of your family are waiting for you to share this, as you said you think your grandfather wants people to read this.

Good post.