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Sleepers Unbound #6: A Pretty Jewel

Dec 20, 2016

Sarah Jewels’ diary

August 3, 2016

Writer’s like to use the word façade. Especially new writers. It’s one of those pseudo-sophisticated words (like pseudo); complex and yet relatively common.

Façade. Meaning concealment. Meaning fake. Meaning hardly discernible.

Isn’t it ironic how so many of us freely choose a word like façade to impress a reader? Like we’re pretending to be someone we’re not. I mean, we basically are pretending. Somewhere out there is the next Sylvia Plath—but she’ll never write more than a helplessly romantic sing-along about her first ever break-up. You betcha there’s another Steinbeck waiting in the slums of Salinas for his departure day—the great open road beckoning him onward, toward the next flimsy American novel.

Façade. Because, you know, we can’t all be famous. Least not till we’re all dead.

Until then, I’m buying my time at the local library. Paying 25 cents for a cup of coffee and staking claim to Workstation 9—one of many recently donated HP Pavilion computers the library received through an accepted grant proposal. The last batch was a series of antiquated IBM computers. (It seems nobody knew there was a library in New Castle before the upgrade.) People are coming in drones to check their emails, scour Facebook, watch YouTube; basically anything but read a book.

I’m one to talk.

I grabbed a stack of Sleeper paperbacks before signing into the computer. But honestly, I had no intention of reading them. Not today. I used to read a couple Granger novels a week. Now I find it hard to open the cover. It’s like they’ve lost their hold over me. Like maybe Miles Granger pulled their essence down in the grave with him. Half the magic was in the anticipation, fantasizing where he’d take Sleeper next.

Part of me feels like Sleeper died too. And no amount of brainstorming is going to bring him back.

I logged into the website with a twinge of difficulty (it feels wrong, this place), and quickly devoured what they wrote last night. There’s a new post. A preacher, looks like, by the name of Calvin. He seems fanatical. Of course he is. On some level, we’re all fanatics, waging a war with ourselves.

My fingers hovered over the SUBMIT button. I’ve saved my introduction into a desktop folder, and I’ve copied and pasted it into the forum more times than I care to admit—even in a diary. But I always delete it. Today was no different.


© Elliott J. Scott 2016. All Rights Reserved.