Each week we’ll be inviting an author to share a peek at their writing space. This week it’s M.R. Cornelius, author of The Ups and Downs of Being Dead.
My writing happens in two stages. First I have to get the ideas flowing. Then I sit down and spew forth. And as most of you know, getting the idea is the tough part. That’s why I walk.
I carry a small notepad and pen, and as I imagine a setting, or create a conversation, I jot down notes. My neighbors have gotten used to me flailing my arms as I argue with imaginary antagonists. And just like with Bessie the cow, when folks see me scribbling furiously in the middle of the road, they slow down until I move.
Whether it’s a first draft or final rewrite, when my thoughts are blocked, I head out the door. I’ve even threatened that I can’t go home until I’ve worked out a scene. Cold wind, or a full bladder can be quite motivating.
A cozy room, the latest laptop, or a fancy ergonomic chair aren’t going to do me a bit of good if I don’t have anything to write.
Fifty-seven year old Robert Malone is the CEO of a successful clothing store chain and married to a former model. When his doctor tells him he is dying of cancer, he refuses to go quietly. Instead of death, Robert choses cryonics. He knows it’s a long shot. His frozen body will be stored in liquid nitrogen for the next seventy-five years, and then he’ll wake up in the future. Maybe. If technology figures out a way to bring him back.
He’s willing to take that gamble.
What he doesn’t realize is that he won’t lie in some dreamless state all that time. His soul is very much awake, and free to move about, just like the others who were frozen before him.
He discovers that he can ride in the cockpit with the pilots, but he can’t turn the page of a magazine. He can sit in the oval office with the president, but he can’t prevent a child from dashing in front of a car. He doesn’t work, or eat, or sleep. These obstacles make it difficult to fall in love, and virtually impossible to reconcile with the living.
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