I have been down the rabbit hole for days, Cheats is distracting me, from my work on Allison. To be very honest this was one of the stories that I wanted to write during NaNoWriMo this year, but Delilah won out. More on her to come during editing later next year.
This book Cheats will not sleep so I have made a deal with myself, to put some other projects aside and work on Cheats after I have gone nuts and had enough of the daily grind of Allison edits.
These stories are about so much more than a collection of cheating spouses. As I see it there are many more ways to be unfaithful in a relationship. A friend reminded me of a story about a girl she knew that essentially put her life on hold for the dreams of her husband. Of course her husband knew, but he took the gifts she gave him because he could.
We often don’t realise the effect this has. She was a loving partner, and willingly surrendered herself and her direction in life for what she thought was the good of the relationship. It was not. She became a resentful passionless doormat. He could of fixed things, he could of stopped taking. She could of been truthful and stood up for herself and perhaps after some jumping up and down he would have been okay about it. Instead, she cheated herself, and him. Her kindness and willingness to surrender herself suffocated their relationship.
My dear friend is a big Keith Urban fan, and knows how songs inspire me. She told me that this song reminds her of the couple she knew. Keith blames the man, (himself) for destroying a beautiful relationship through selfishness, for always taking and not taking care of her.
Who really it to blame? We teach people how to treat us. She taught him that her needs didn’t matter and he was not strong enough to push past her faux objections to treat her the same. Stupid boy wasn’t mean or abusive, he was just selfish, weak and immature.
Nothing better when exploring heartache that some good old country music…
A trip around Fremantle in edit season, was the perfect remedy to a day indoors. Thankfully the weather has cooled and being outside has become temporarily tolerably again. We have been bombarded here with forty degree days, and so cooped up inside during the productive hours of the day.
Here are some pictures that I took around Fremantle Markets. I really enjoyed the smells, colours and sights of Fremantle. The markets themselves suffer terribly at the hands of our fire lighting villain Scott. To be honest I felt a pang of guilt at the destruction the fire caused (in the book only) but today I was reassured that all is well in this very magical pocket of West Australia.
My next work in progress has been inspired by the character Karen, from Love Actually. Karen played by Emma Thompson discovers a necklace in her husbands pocket. It came as a surprise to her when instead of giving her the necklace for Christmas she received a Joni Mitchell CD. The necklace being a gift for his assistant.
“Cheating causes cracks.”
“Not all cracks can be refilled.”
At the time of the discovery, the family is on their way to their children’s Christmas concert. She has to hold it together. When she does confront him, Karen is dignified and manages to make her message brief and very clear. Watch below.
At the end of the movie we see Karen and the Kids collecting Harry from the airport, saying ‘welcome back.’ Its not a warm welcome home but you have the sense that he will in time be forgiven.
I have spent some time exploring and reflecting on heartache. Specifically the damage caused by those that we love. I am looking at both inadvertent and deliberate actions of cheating. From ways that are quite subtle and chip at the edges of a relationship to the acts that will cause a relationship to end.
“All relationships have consequence.”
“All relationships cost us a piece of our heart.”
This collection of short fiction stories will explore many ways a cheat can break a heart. Due for release 2021.
My working tittle and cover is below.