Lovely Awkward: A Year of Wine, Romance and Life Among the French

Lovely Awkward: A Year of Wine, Romance and Life Among the French

Thursday 28 January 2010

The writing really begins -- with a second story

I've been writing about this experience since it first began. I started with the articles in the Toronto Star, then started a Twitter account and a blog. I've been keeping the emails I've sent back home (although not as romantic as my great-grandmother's postcards) and I've been keeping notes.

But I've found it's been easier to think about this experience in tidbits rather than as a whole. There's a lot of contemplation involved when you're a character in the story you're writing.

So, I've decided to start writing two stories -- one is this one, the other is one I started several years ago.

The old story, I think, is actually the perfect project for my new life. It's the story of a woman in her 20s who gets called back to her hometown to get the rest of her stuff before the town is about to be destroyed. It's apt, because I've just abandoned my hometown for France and in both cases, the details that are really important about where we come from become distilled.

I won't give away all of the details of the old story, which I might have mentioned before, but a number of people return to the town with different ideas about what they want to preserve and what they want to forget.

It sort of goes along with the idea that you can never go home again. If I stay here in France long enough, I guess that could apply to both these stories I'm writing.

Any thoughts on what you'd do in your hometown if you had to leave it forever?

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