Press ‘publish’

In 1935, my grandmother’s brother ambushed his ex-wife and her boyfriend, shot and wounded them both, then killed himself.

Around 1975, I heard the story for the first and last time. You can imagine that it made an impression.

Pittsburgh_Sun_Telegraph_Mon__Oct_28__1935_

Sometime in the 2010s, I decided to investigate this family tragedy/scandal/secret. Then I decided to write about it, more for therapeutic reasons than anything else. I finished a draft that I liked a lot, but it was written for myself and family. Revising it for a general readership turned out to be harder than I expected. (By this time my Lyme-induced brain fog and anxiety had kicked in big-time.) So I sat on it. For years.

Last May, I finished a new draft. But I wasn’t sure where to submit it for publication. So I sat on it again.

Why the hesitation, the procrastination? Well, you know: perfectionism. Fear of failure. The “not good enough” feeling. I had to get past those obstacles and a few others: concern about what some family members would think. The notion that I need to get paid for this labor of love. The notion that it should go in a “real” publication. The need to find the right photos in an old album, remember how to use my scanner, and put the whole thing together.

And now, finally, here it is: “The Ballad of Frank and Tookie.” Let me know what you think.

What is the Mary Oliver Challenge? Glad you asked! You can read about it here.

 

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