Wednesday, June 2, 2010

What's real?

I've had so many wonderful experiences with people who do not want my characters to stop being in their lives. I just talked with a woman this morning who just read my book twice so she could keep them in her life a bit longer. So, my daughter's come up with a plan, and that is to create snippets of Langsberry life right here on my blog and post the happenings as they occur.

 A lot of people have wanted to know how much of this is autobiographical. They think because I'm a fiber artist I made Grace one. That's not how it happened at all though. While writing the book I would get visions in my head of what Grace was making, and since those visions wouldn't go away, I devised ways to make what I saw. Therefore, Grace made me a fiber artist. Hm...

What is autobiographical? I really did have a dear friend died of ovarian cancer. I really did work for my husband in his office and despised it. However, it was a chiropractic office, not an accountant's. I did leave him, but I did it long after the manuscript was written. So, again Grace did it first.

I live and work on a square now, but didn't while writing the book. I really didn't even know anyone who did until moving to McKinney, TX in 2008. I did grow up in the Dallas area. My mother is still alive, but my dad died of myocardial infarction (better known as a heart attack) when I was 24 years old. I was married for a hundred years to the same person and we have a daughter, unlike Grace.

What's interesting to me is that the husband character, Jack, is really based on someone I had a crush on in high school. When Grace is talking with Gordon about what her high school boyfriend said about love, that was a conversation I had had with this guy back in the '70s.

As soon as I graduated from Bishop Lynch High School in Dallas, I did go to Western State College in Gunnison, Colorado. I did meet the man I would eventually marry there. He was two years older than me, but I did complete my undergrad degree before marrying, unlike Grace.

We did live in a small town in Colorado, but there was no square to be found there. As a matter of fact, it was a metropolitan area compared to Langsberry.

The question I get asked the very most is if there was a Gordon in my life. The answer is no, and yes. It was interesting because I happened to be in Aspen one weekend editing my manuscript. I was on a page that described Gordon's flannel shirt, jeans, and work boots. There were very particular things about his clothing, and I had just read it when a friend of mine from college called to take me out to lunch. When I got in his car, he was wearing exactly what I had written about Gordon's attire. This man and I did not do art together. However, he opened me up to my own love of flying. The first time we flew together was from Aspen to Gunnison on my 48th birthday. The next day I asked for a divorce. I wanted to fly in every aspect of my life. I still do.