I've been writing "Hindsight" for Danvers Patch for over a year now. Recently I was asked just how many more stories from childhood and growing up in Danvers I could possibly have.
"Oh a million," I replied confidently. "If I think hard, I can always pull a new one out of my hat. Like rabbits, they multiply. The more I think about the past the more stories I remember."
"Great," replied my inquisitor. "I was worried you'd run out and that Hindsight would no longer be sustainable." I laughed nervously, as I realized the thought of sustainability had never even occurred to me.
I slunk home after my visit with this friend, suddenly uncertain and insecure about keeping Hindsight going. I have many irons in the fire these days, from writing projects, to PR work, to book reviews, to facilitating interviews and media requests from a vast network of publicists. Oh, and there’s that little matter of two unfinished novels, and one that continues to be edited to within an inch of being entirely rewritten.
I enjoy all these aspects of my work, but Hindsight has a special place in my heart, and the thought of giving it up resulted in a lump forming in my throat. Yet suddenly, as if by mere suggestion from my friend, I could not think of one more story from my youth.
I decided to take a little sabbatical from writing for Patch and hoped that I could recharge my batteries. I also decided to search through old boxes of journals and see if I couldn't find one with a treasure trove of stories to share. My success rate was only fifty percent. My batteries are recharged but there was no newly discovered journal. An idea popped into my head, and I verbalized it to see how it felt. "Self,” I said, "You have an awful lot of stories about your life and living in Danvers beyond your transformation into a grown-up. Why don't you write about some of them?” I agreed with my self that this was a good idea, and mentioned it to Molly Buccini, the editor of Danvers Patch.
Molly agreed that this could work, and I have promised myself to share only those stories that are touching, or more importantly humorous. I also promise to change names to protect the not so innocent, and leave names out entirely to protect the truly innocent.
I've lived and worked in Danvers for over four decades, and hope you will enjoy this new format. We here at Patch would love for you to share your stories in the comments section as well.
Starting next week Hindsight will hurtle through my years in Danvers, but probably not in a linear fashion. I hope to make our readers smile, laugh, and look forward to whatever sort of mess I got my self into that was worth writing about!