By David Karp
Today I read some of the thirty-four page short story I wrote over quarantine for the first time in a while. It got me excited to get back into and and work on the final draft for a couple of reasons.
I’m starting to feel ready to go back into that world. Rome. Roma. The main character, Roger, is very much grounded but grounded in a world that could be half real and half fantasy. We never really know. I think the only person who would know is Roger himself.
This was an important feeling to capture in the story.
Why? Because it was the same feeling I had for most of my trip to Rome ten years ago.
A lot of aspects of the story are based in fiction. But there are some that are not.
The setting of the story, in and around Rome, is one of those things that was real, and it was something I knew I had to capture in it.
The whole time I wrote the first draft, I did everything in my power to immerse myself into the piece and into the world. I watched Italian film. I learned and cooked Italian recipes. I listened to Italian instrumental music when I wrote (much like I am doing now). I find that I write better when I allow myself to be immersed in a world.
I gotta say, the movie “Roman Holiday” was one of my favorites in that time of writing. The emotion, the setting, the characters and dialogue, the story. It was perfect for what I was writing. It inspired me to keep going to tell my own story, which is probably why it turned out as long as it did.
The story is called “Lasciare Andare”, which means “To let go.” A proper title for the theme of the piece. It was also proper to how I was feeling at the time during quarantine. I was on the brink of turning thirty when I finished the story (literally, I believe I finished the first draft the day before) and, being stuck at home and being who I am, one thinks. Hard. And my twenties, let alone the past two years, were something I was deeply reflecting on.
This got hard at times.
But I made a friend in Roger as I wrote of his own adventures, both outer and inner, and we bonded on the streets of Rome. He understood me. It was quite nice to have amidst a global pandemic that keeps you caged up in the confines of your own walls (both inner and outer, hehe.)
My time in Italy ten years ago was an essential and important part of my twenties. I learned how much I loved seeing what there was to offer in other parts of the world. I met so many people (characters, too) that brought me to a place of mysticism and love of life and people; a high I have yet to come down from.
Anyway, I’m rambling. It’s been a long, introspective day. Well, that and way too long a nap which will probably keep me up for awhile. Oh well, I have to catch up on my reading.
Well, folks. I’ll probably talk more about this short story as we go on with this blog on some other Monday. There is a lot to it. But of course, I am going to try to refrain from spoiling anything. But I thought I would let you in on the story that this blog is fueling.
Until next time.