Although it happens pretty frequently when I’m in the flow and doing what I think I should be doing, I’m always amazed when synchronicity occurs. For instance, I’ve been meaning to starting going through my book How to Survive an Estralarian Mind Meld and release it through my blog so people are able to read it, and maybe even buy a copy. Well, as you’ll see in this first segment, when the idea for the book came to me, I had been rather involved in the heart-wrenching drama surrounding the murder of Carlie Brucia, as I had come to get to know her mother, who died last year.
Anyway, my friend Adam Tebrugge was in town last week after moving to North Carolina and invited me out for a drink at Mandeville with some of his other friends. When someone asked me how we met, even though we largely got to know each other through our homelessness advocacy, our first contact was when he emailed me to tell me to stop trying to contact his client, who was on trial for the murder of Carlie. After seeing Adam again, the next day, the top story in the newspaper was about how Carlie’s killer would not be getting the death penalty.
I’ve kind of always hated that this book started by mentioning such a grisly murder and a pretty low point in my life, but that’s just the way things work out. Like Joseph Campbell says, every hero’s journey starts in the Ordinary World, and if this a stage of my hero’s journey, the ordinary world I started in was pretty bleak.
So from that very low point, this is how the story began…
I was working on a screenplay based upon the true story of Carlie Brucia, a child that was abducted here in Sarasota a few years ago. It received national attention and even made the evening news in Los Angeles, where I was living when it occurred. On the night in question, the despair in which I had submerged myself by participating in this story was enhanced by the weather.
Sarasota, notoriously fortunate in avoiding any direct hits by major hurricanes for decades, was being buttressed by its fourth hurricane of the season. Having already been passed on the south, east, and west, the last remaining gusts of wind were still moving to the north as I stared at the blinking cursor on my computer screen.
The house had shuddered more than once as the maelstrom blew past, and I couldn’t help but consider the way that the despicable event of this young girl’s murder had wrought just as much emotional damage when it passed through the area.
Tears had been rampant since the onset of the project as I had gotten to know the grieving mother and written the words that described the horrible events that surrounded the catastrophe. And though I was approaching the end of the third act, I couldn’t wait to type the final “FADE OUT” and be finished with this abysmal tirade. As the storm blew outside, my mind seemed awash in the horrid details of the story, and I longed for a way to escape.
And that is how I came to meet ‘the boys.’
I wiped another tear from my eye and looked to the blinking cursor. I typed one more sentence. Upon hitting the ‘enter’ key, a crash of thunder erupted with an explosion of lighting and I was submerged in darkness. My computer died.
The lights went out. And my heart raced.
Check back next week for the next segment or order your own copy here.