I am still in the middle of Camp NaNoWriMo where I am trying to write and edit 25,000 words this month on my WIP. Sixteen more days of that.
Reading three books on the history of Night and how it was for people prior to the 20th century. Lots of interesting things there. Research. Reading Sharp Objects on which the TV show is based. Reading. Reading. Reading.
Just began writing a blog post on In Search of Damien Echols, Part 1 which is an attempt to humanize and also explore the Nons perspective. Can I do both? That is the question.
Revising a post called Why do I feel like you are standing over me, screaming? which is very much about social media and the WM3 case.
Today when I went for my morning walk, I locked myself out of the house. Habit of turning that lock and carrying keys. Only today I did not carry any house keys because Joey is home. So I had to wake him up. Sorry for the both of us. Laughing.
Got through my late husband's birthday without too much drama.
Cleaning house and going for a long swim today.
Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Never in a million years did I ever expect to be sitting here writing the first of my introductions on the 1993 West Memphis Three Murder case. I am not a crime person, meaning I do not read crime fiction, watch crime shows, listen to crime podcasts, or turn on Nancy Grace. My hobbies are gardening, painting, and collecting odd things. I read and write and sometimes teach for a living. I am also an introvert and really dislike putting myself in the public sphere. BUT, for over the last eight months of my life, every day, sometimes all day, most of the time nearly half the day, I have been reading, reading, and reading about the WM3 case and collecting any data I could find on elements that interested me. I have spent hours color-coding and organizing material, and even shockingly, joined a Facebook group where I post comments on the case. To my surprise and sometimes dismay, on this group, I have been at times a strange creature, one who could be cold, blunt, snarky, passionate, confused, silly, and even ashamed. Even now, I am sitting here, shaking my head, because I don't know how I got to this place.
But one thing is clear, I am compelled to write about the WM3 case and its cosmos, and I am going to do it on my blog. I am not going to write a book about it. I have decided I will not make any money off of this misery. None. I just want to think about it in the way that is most natural to me.
That is what happens to writers, they find an interesting subject and they explore. They have to choose how to do that, what amount of time they want to spend on this searching and seeking. It is kind of like travelling or even planting a garden. Writers want to make meaning. I guess I want to make something meaningful, which is, in various ways, totally self-centered. (Writers are like that.)
The thing that grabbed my attention was that this story began with children. (I shall be more detailed later.) The murder victims were three eight-year-old boys. The accused were three teenagers, all very immature, with social and domestic problems. The trial and investigation consisted of even more children and young adults, as witnesses. The aftermath, the social elements also involved children and young adults. My son included. In fact, all my sons were somehow involved with the social, online elements of the WM3 cosmos.
However, my attentions soon turned to the adults and this is where I became seriously concerned about what the WM3 case was about and why so many people are drawn to it in somewhat intense ways, myself included. I do consider this cosmos of murder, mystery, puzzles, myths, lies, and other assorted social elements a "foul and gritty thing." It is not a happy story. It will not have a happy ending. But it's an important American story with so many layers that one person could spend their entire lifetime exploring it. Even after twenty-five years, the WM3 case still grows, still haunts, and tragically still destroys lives.
So I am sitting here writing about it. I've set myself some goals. Mainly to confront certain myths and problems that I see all the time concerning this case. I am here to explore, and like the gardener that I am, pull out the weeds that are so firmly rooted, so that I can see some kind of truth. Maybe I won't like what I see or that I'll fail to find the kind of truth that I am looking for. Maybe the truth is impossible after so many years. I don't know that yet. I know that with this particular case, readers like me, are living in a land of memories and reconstructed histories. Yes, people, we are treading waters so muddy that at times we are going to be blind.
So be warned. I am not a sentimental writer, there is no need to please or to take a side or even find justice, because at this point I am not sure justice can be achieved. For me, the WM3 case is like an on-going crime and I am standing at its periphery, scratched and bleeding.
I'll close by saying that I will throw in some humor at times, so I can have some balance. Irony can be humor, can't it? My posts will not be organized in the usual ways, but I will use labels where an interested reader can click and pull up related material. For example: my next WM3 post is about the myth of Aleister Crowley and Damien Echols who is considered the mastermind behind the WM3 murder and was convicted by a jury and sentenced to die. Strangely, it's a fun post.
Tuesday, June 26, 2018
I've never written characters like the ones I am writing now. It's risky business. But hey, at this stage, I am going for broke. When I get up in the morning this is the first thing I want to see, to remind me of how far I have come and how far I have to go. I wish I could tell you his name, what he likes for breakfast, what he does when he's bored. I wish I could share things, but it's too early for that. One day....
Friday, June 8, 2018
"Damien always said he was into the occult, just used to always denied being a devil worshiper, always said he knew who did it, he knew, he told me at one time, that he knew of a uh, of a book here in West Memphis called the Necronomicon I think it is, and he didn't mean the one you could buy off the shelf this was a old one, uh that had been passed down for generations so what he was telling me was that he thought he was saying there was a generational Satanist here in town. " -- Jerry Driver