Well I’m a month late and long overdue, but with all these folks resolving to write, I know it would do me some good as well. So here we go. Last time I required a kick in the ass to get back to the page I started writing about reading, keeping a journal of what I’d been absorbing and even writing some professional reviews. So that’s what I’m going to return to and luck had it I stumbled upon a book I started years ago and never finished but recall the horror with which the book hit me so I’m going to post a blurb here and re-read it this week. I recall thinking this could be set in Juneau rather than coastal Maine, both are start places of extremes, sea smells and darkness.
An excerpt from the first chapter:
If you were to try to leave, people who have known you since the day you were born would recognize your car and see you leaving. They would wonder where you were going and they would wave with two fingers off the steering wheel, a wave that might seem like a stop sign or a warning to someone trying to forget this very small town. It would be much easier to stay.
The town is built on a steep and rocky coast so that the weathered houses are stacked like shingles, or like the rows of razor wire in a prison, one on top of the other up the hill. Small paths and narrow roads wind their ways between the houses so that there’s no privacy in this town. If you were to stumble home drunk one night, by morning, the entire town would know. Not that they would care. People here are accustomed to drunks. We have the highest rate of alcoholism in the country and this fact is repeated so often I thought we should put it on the Chamber of Commerce sign at the town line that welcomes tourists. More alcoholics per captita! Enjoy your visit!
Most of the waterfront is cluttered with moorings, piers that smell of motor oil, and outbuildings for the fishermen though there is a short stretch of sandy beach and a boardwalk where every summer a few, fool tourists fail to enjoy themselves and spend their vacations wondering why anyone would live here. If they asked me I’d tell them, “We live here because we hate the rest of you.” Though that isn’t always true it is sometimes. Then there is the ocean, mean and beautiful.
“We’re getting out of here,” I say. “Let’s go.” I find Jude’s keys on his kitchen table. He is still in the living room just lying there. Underneath the keys on the table there is a pen and a letter written from Jude to me. His handwriting is like his hair, long and dark tangles. The letter is tucked into an envelope where Jude has written on the outside:
THE REST OF THE STORY (from http://www.samanthahunt.net/seas1.html)