Escaping reality has never been a problem for me. I am one of those casualties from the Celtic Tiger. For one long year I used the power of my creative mind to escape reality and to convince myself that the economy would turn around and boom once again – tomorrow. I ignore the little window envelopes and continue to put them aside in a neat little pile. On good days I might open one then lapse back into denial. I managed to convince myself that “Michael” (not his real name for legal reasons) from the bank might even fancy me. He has a nice clear neutral accent. Well “Michael” phones me every few weeks and talks about repossession and budgets and legal action while I think about dinner for two.
Three weeks ago while “Michael” was serenading me again, I got an email from Paula (her real name) from Poolbeg Press. I had almost given up hope of ever getting a novel published. Several times I thought I might be a deluded old dafty. I often thought I was nothing more than a dreamer. During those bleak moments I would become Olive Collins, a failed writer unable to deal with reality who would eventually end up in the local nut-house.
I write fiction, love fiction and live for fiction but for a period, I considered writing one of those Misery Lit novels documenting my last few years of hell. The following would be a short synopsis of my Mis Lit novel:
– A once successful 40 something Marketing & Advertising executive must adapt to a life without shopping sprees, jaunts abroad, facials, and all the trappings of a self-obsessed life. Even more harrowing, she must adapt to driving a beaten up old jalopy after her sports car blows up all the while she lives in Cuckoo Land thinking the economic crisis is going to improve – tomorrow and the big bucks will come tumbling in the door again. This harrowing account (dramatic loud drum pounding music – Boom. Boom. Boom) of facing life with a crumbling botoxed face is a true account of her year of hell.
With the good news from Poolbeg there is a happy ending to my Mis Lit novel. Of course this news doesn’t improve my falling botoxed face or mounting bills but my ego gets a welcomed boost.
The new plot goes like this:
One day in Cuckoo Land “Michael” (from the Bank) finally manages to get through to Olive, this baffles her as she’s been avoiding his calls like the plague and thought she knew his number. When “Michael” is suggest money saving schemes, Olive gets an email from Paula. It is The Best email Olive has ever received and couldn’t give a fiddlers about banks or money or finance because she just won her very own unique kinda lotto.
That my friends is as true as I’m sitting on my couch with a neat pile of unopened bills and one sealed envelope containing my contract from Poolbeg.