A First Novel: How It All Started

I recently decided to write my first piece of fiction. Correction: My first piece of fiction was attempting to be straight until I turned 30. How long ago was that you might ask? I’ll deflect on that and simply say that I now have grandchildren so I think you get the picture that it was a while ago. I could write endlessly on that subject but that’s not what this post is about.

No, what I want to meander about is my decision to pursue a desire I’ve had since my sophomore year of college, writing a book or more specifically a novel. What prompted this late in life venture? Actually it all came about as a result of a dream I had 2 days before Thanksgiving. I awoke at 2 in the morning from a dream like none I ever had before. I don’t know about other people’s minds but when I dream it always involves someone I know – friends, family, living and dead, that sort of thing OR celebrities of some sort – actors, TV personalities, politicians, etc. Well this particular fantasy involved no one like that at all but rather several purely imaginary characters. It was a truly fascinating dream and when I awoke my first thought was “Wow what was that all about?” quickly followed by “I feel like I’ve just been watching a movie.”  I forced myself to stay awake for about half an hour, trying to recall as much detail as possible, randomly assigning names to the individuals who had just invaded my mind to help me recollect as much as I could when I got up 5 hours later.

When I did get up the next morning, after my usual AM ritual  (2 plus cups of coffee, watching the morning news to see what had happened while I was slumbering) I then went to my computer to try to put into words what I could remember from my odd but fascinating nighttime journey. Initially I had no intention of anything more than simply recording for myself the details of my fantasy and then bingo – the light bulb went on. I thought “Hell Ed how about doing what your college English professor told you so long ago you should do, explore and utilize your writing talent? Somehow you could never quite find the time to do it. Isn’t it about time to take the plunge?”

Thus began the remarkable journey that I am now 3 months into. In addition to writing my novel (which after all is my primary goal) I plan to post more info both here and on my website http://www.EdHartnett.com from time to time about how the process is going. This is a journey I eagerly embrace and I cannot wait until I have a finished manuscript. For now though it’s time to say Sayonara.

One thought on “A First Novel: How It All Started

  1. Ed,

    I wish you well. I am very interested in your topic because, having worked in a large, liberal San Francisco law firm for many years, I met a number of men and some women who decided to live their lives not as they were raised to live them, but as liberated men and women. Of the group, I became closer to one or two of the men, and to this day am close to only one. It interests me that these people tried very hard to live their lives as they were expected to live them and ended up being very unhappy — one became bulimic — until they liberated themselves. My friend dated women at Stanford, and was even an escort at a debutante ball. Two of the men told me they knew they were different from age eight on. That’s pretty early. I’m not sure most of us are aware of our sexual identities at that age.

    Anyway, all good wishes in your new endeavor.



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