Work In Progress

Written by:

Once upon a time …. I found a story.

I was working on a project (my doctoral dissertation) where I had to show that what I said was True. I had to have Documentation. And Footnotes.

But I couldn’t prove that my story was true, I just knew that it was, or at least that it could have happened in that way.

Nevertheless, I spent a lot of time trying to wrestle this story into the form I had been working in. After all, I had spent a lot of time being trained in that form so it seemed reckless to abandon it. So I tried to put the story into academic research form … and failed.

Years went by.

I tried creative non-fiction. I had to learn what that was first, and read books in that form and that took more time and ended the same way. The story did not fit.

More years went by.

I decided to try fiction. I had to actually learn fiction-writing as I had spent many, many years learning not just non-fiction but academic non-fiction. So I took a few online courses that got me going and I read a lot of fiction and acquired favorite authors whose style I tried to imitate.

More years went by.

I got distracted by a different project and wrote a different book.

But I always came back to the story. There was something – or someone – in it that would not let me quit.

So now I’m close and I’m actually identifying the story as my Work In Progress. This means people are going to ask me, “so how’s your book coming?” and I won’t be able to just pretend I am writing it and that’s a good thing.

The working title is Holy Water and there is a connection to the image above. Some readers may identify the specific location but that is not named because … although it could have happened as it does in the story, I can’t prove it. And I’m ok with that.


I have taught writing in classrooms for decades, mentored beginning writers, and supported stalled writers in finishing their project. I write both non-fiction and fiction and participate in three writing groups. I am always on the lookout for new writers who just need to know they have a story and that their story is worth telling.