Updating this post (spoiler alert): I have completed my book of short fiction stories about the Holocaust.
The original post (below) was about my process of writing short fiction stories about the Holocaust and a particular hurdle I had to overcome. The first draft is now finished, but it requires editing before it will be ready for publication.
If you would like to be notified when Tiergartenstrasse 4 becomes available, simply go here.
Short fiction stories about the Holocaust almost finished
What will it take to get through the invisible fog of creative exhaustion?
I mean, I really know exactly what I am going to write. Why have I creatively seized up?
Perhaps it is due to the scene I am yet to describe or it could be that I need to reach a certain reflective state to do it justice.
This particular piece of the puzzle has been left till last.
That seems reasonable, I’m sure you’ll agree, but it is now the only place left to go.
And, because I have put off writing it, this part of the story has grown in importance – weighed down by the synergy with its sister stories.
Looking within for the appropriate words for my short fiction stories about the Holocaust
Without ‘giving the game away’, when I was young I lost a friend to an untimely and unexpected death.
I was probably the last person to speak to him, outside the family and the medical attendees.
No-one knew how seriously ill he was.
In hindsight, the way that family members spoke, it is clear that they thought it was not a life-threatening illness.
And then he was gone.
Due to my circumstances at the time, I only heard about his passing by word of mouth.
I did not get time to grieve; I was not given time to grieve.
The world kept pushing me onward…onward to a future that was inferior, because my friend was no longer around.
We were the kind of friends who would ‘bounce off’ one another with joyous humor. He had trodden the earth with light steps, had taken everything in his stride.
His death was a watershed moment.
The world was not always so nice to experience, I had learned.
Searching for a poetic sepulcher
Many years later, someone recounted to me the death of a young sibling. This individual found that a visit to the final resting place made up for being excluded somehow at the time.
Great idea, I thought, so I went to what I assumed was the right place.
Oh, but no sepulcher for me to view, no sign of age or overgrowth on the hewn markers, to deflect my sadness from the focal point of grief.
The family had taken the ashes.
What a ‘plucker’ of the heart-strings of the disconsolate that place was. No comfort at all in its colorless vistas – on that day, anyway.
Without in the very least discounting any aspect of the subsequent grief of this unexpected passing, let me put it into perspective.
My friend was born into a family that was loving, sociable and united. He had a full life up to that point.
The shock was immense.
But what would it have been like if he died as a result of someone’s negligence or, worse still, if someone had conspired towards his demise or could somehow benefit from it?
If an untimely death from natural causes, in peace time, can so pummel the emotions, what of a demise due to sheer evil?
My book of short fiction stories about the Holocaust, Tiergartenstrasse 4, will personally hurt before it’s ready to enlighten.
Colored photograph of paper and fountain pen
Photo by Álvaro Serrano on Unsplash