Sleeping Late

I woke this morning at 9:45 –the latest I’ve slept in years. The first thing I did was open 4 Kings and began a second draft pass of Chapter 8. These edits are the only thing I’m capable of right now – no new free writes.

Last night I woke around 4 am with a scene in my head. My mind is cluttered lately with the writers-group project and its character building, and my ‘policeman’ needed something to pull himself away from ‘hunting’ Berek. This policeman character has become central to the story, and thus fleshing out his life takes my brain hostage more than it should.

The policeman’s lover of many years is an orthodox Jewish man who develops stomach cancer after our policeman moves to Kutno and begins investigating the murders Berek’s committed. I needed something to alter his trajectory and so I chose to ‘fridge’ his lover by giving him stomach cancer; being Jewish in Soviet Poland means that he’s barred from chemo trials and when surgery isn’t effective, he opts for suicide by morphine overdose.

Last night his death scene played out of my head; the Jewish man opts for morphine-induced suicide because he refuses to ‘fade away’ as the older men did in the concentration camp where he’d been a child. His last moment with the policeman is a sweet one—he dies with a smile on his face, and when our policeman realizes he’s dead, it destroys him even though he knew it was coming.

I woke up crying as this scene played out in my head around 4 am and retired to the bathroom to write it in my notebook. Once I got it written, I fell back to sleep (around 5:30 am) and that’s why I woke up late.

The cats were at the door, starving for dear life.

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