Such strange creatures I tell you. With every sullen stare, heavy sigh, and roll of the eye I remembered those days where I too was an eye rolling, angst filled, temperamental bitch with zits and body image issues.
I've wanted to strangle my darling teen on more than one occasion. Always ridden with Catholic Guilt after such murderous thoughts I call my mom and tell her how sorry I am for being such a horrible teenage witch and that I love her so very much. I figure if I give a heartfelt plea for forgiveness the gods will change my fate and give me a teen who does all her chores and hugs me often.
That hasn't happened yet. God, I hope she doesn't grow up to write a tell all Mommy Dearest about me...
The more I brainstormed this macabre tale the more I liked it. The more I loved this teen with a scarred face and wounded heart. One day on the El-train I took out my handy dandy notebook and scribbled some musings. 250 words. A possible opening. I took said scribblings to a Writers Conference and read it aloud to my crew of fellow geniuses. They loved it. With all their praise and encouragement I knew I had write this tale. It took a year to flesh out the full story before writing a single word. (I did this in between writing another novel.)
I pulled together other story tid-bits I had collecting dust in my brain, ideas I thought would make good fiction one day. A haunted house reality show had this little girl who'd been haunted for years by the shadow of a man wearing a hooded sweatshirt, just hovering over her bed. Creepy. And it stuck with me. A little girl forever haunted. What if the person haunting her was her mom? Even creepier. The movie THE RING totally freaked me out. Those big eyes, gurgling sounds, and jerky body movements of that long haired thing inspired my ghost mom.
My brother's death in the end is what truly inspired this tale. The what if factor. What if he lived? What would've been different? If I could go back would I change his fate, knowing it may and probably would forever alter my own. My annoyingly awesome teen may never have been born. Such thoughts once bombarded me. Regret and what-ifs have their place in the grieving process. But I can't play in the world of make believe with my real life. I wouldn't be me if one thing were different and I couldn't live with that. So, the what ifs I'll save for my fictional world.
The final and most awe inspiring inspiration for my tale came from the 2012 Cold Play Mylo Xyloto Concert. I need a soundtrack to write and this tale had yet to find one. The days before the concert the teen and I listened to a contest winner on the radio gushing for tickets. We both agreed how awesome it would be to go. Two days later I got an email; someone had two free tickets. Wurd to ya mutha! Squee! Woot! Now, I'm bad with song titles. I just jam in my car and on the El to work not knowing those important details. I knew very little about the tour and their current album but was stoked either way. I LOVE Coldplay. Who doesn't?
Teen and I get there and gush as they give us bracelets. How cute, a souvenir. Then we see the set and its a graffiti laden paradise, glow in the dark even. My muse perks up and feels a soundtrack coming on. I peruse the interwebz for the set list and apparently the Back To The Future theme is part of the show. Were the writing gods trying to tell me something?