Echoes of “What If”

I posted this on Facebook:

“I think my love for yellow roses dates back to my childhood… My mother had a steamer trunk where she kept her college keepsakes. Once in a while, when we were alone, she would open the trunk and tell me about her treasures. She had three or four beautiful formals with shoes and purses to match. She told me that she was saving them for me to wear someday. I dreamed of wearing those dresses but… alas, I grew two inches taller than my mom and although I was slim as a teenager, I could never wear those beautiful dresses. But… let me get to the yellow roses. She kept a thick scrapbook and between the pages in the middle she had pressed a yellow rose corsage and there was a florist card on that page that read – “Roses of yellow from and extraordinary fellow.” It seemed so romantic and I will always remember those rare times when my mother shared SOME of her secrets with me.  I don’t know who the fellow was… Only that this fellow named Wade dated my mom when she was the banker’s daughter and faded into the memory of her college days when she married my dad and became a farmer’s wife. But she passed the tales of her treasures on to me, and it’s possible that echoes of those memories may show up in my books somewhere.”

And now I’m ready to share the rest of it… well, some more of it. I suppose that everything an author writes comes from some memory of life experience. Life experience can include: something that happened to them, almost happened to them, something they read, or something that happened to someone they know, etc. However, the idea that shows up in the story isn’t very closely related, it’s an echo. It happens something like this – As a child I was intrigued by a florist card from one of my mom’s college beaus. Many years later the floral card and the yellow roses came to mind and I thought what if this happened? Then, what if that happened? What if she did this? What if he did that? What if it wasn’t him? What if… What if… and at this point any thought of my mother’s steamer trunk and the treasures it held had disappeared and I’d followed the echo to some distant peak. And the story that emerged is a book titled THE ROGUE TRUST.


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