A couple of months ago, I wrote THE END on Mary Not Broken. The last episode posted this past Tuesday and the story is now marked COMPLETE on Amazon’s Kindle Vella. The story of Glory Bishop and her mother Mary is now all told. There will be no more chapters or episodes of the Johnson family.
Honestly, I don’t know how I feel.
Glory Bishop started as a scene I quickly wrote in a women’s writing class I took in 1992. It was a five-minute writing sprint. The scene had a girl crossing a street carrying a pair of red pumps. It was summer and she had on a long winter coat and was heading to a bar. The hook was that she was having an argument in her head with her overbearing mother. Her mother’s voice was berating her for looking like a Jezebel carrying red whore shoes. I later expanded the scene to include the girl getting drunk off of alcohol and the blues—that sounded like gospel music—taking off her dress, and dancing.
“And that’s where the sunrise found her, stripped down to her soul and dancing on the bar.”
The girl eventually became Glory Bishop, and the voice was her mother Mary.
These people… these voices… this story has been with me for 30 years and, though I’m kinda tired of them, I’m sad to see them go. My children have grown up with Glory Bishop and came into young adulthood with Mary. I forced them to listen to me process plot issues and they celebrated triumphs with me. They’re proud of me.
I wrote constantly. Morning, noon, and night. Weekdays, weekends, and holidays. I never left my computer for more than for a day, and I ended each day sitting at my keyboard. What will I do with my days and nights?
I don’t know what to do with my brain now that I’m not wracking it to defeat writer’s block or bleeding it dry out onto a page. I’m gonna miss the interactions with editors and proofreaders and all the people who made my books books. What will I present to my writing groups that have been my muse and my sanity throughout much of this process?
Maybe I’ll get back to cooking or photography. Maybe I’ll get to know these people who used to be my children. Maybe I’ll clean my house. I have time, now, for other things… like writing another story.