Patrice and I traveled the California Zephyr from Chicago to San Francisco this last half of October (2012). I made the trip for myriad reasons––visit Dara and Jim in California, see the Grand Junction, Colorado, train station where Richard Belisle (Read scene from Wounded) is diverted into the second half of the upcoming novel, Wounded, take a break from writing, which I pick up again on Monday.
San Francisco:1970 and 2012. Much water has passed beneath the bridge since I was there last. I trained Mondays and Tuesdays at McClelland AFB (Sacramento), then hitchhiking to Berkeley to spend my second lieutenant’s $600.00 monthly pay. It was a place and time freighted with scorching emotion. We were in love, a patriot Midwest farm boy; a Princeton, N.J. girl, child of European first generation emigrants fled from Hitler’s Germany (Her parents would have been then at least twenty years younger than I am now). Love–a word freighted with varied, vague, but scorching emotions itself, right? ‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less.’
Why do we write these novels but to discern the meaning of words?