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Genesis of a Historical Novel

Thursday, January 25, 2007

date magic

What to talk about, when one's task is really a repetitive one, a more or less daily grind, and one that I don't want to reveal too too many details of, in the interest of keeping my story alive and fresh for its eventual consumers?

One thing that's happened is that my local community newspaper, the North Shore News, published a letter I wrote them a couple of weeks ago--it came out in yesterday's edition. Interestingly, yesterday was also my birthday.

That type of "date coincidence" has happened to me before. The real coincidental date in my life has been March 9. On March 9, 1989, my first TV show, a one-off half-hour comedy called "What's Wrong with Neil?", cowritten with Warren Easton, aired on CBC. Three years later, March 9, 1992, by the purest coincidence, our next TV show aired on CBC: the first broadcast of the pilot episode of The Odyssey, then still titled "The Jellybean Odyssey". It was an astonishing coincidence, when I noticed it. In each case I had a broadcast party here at my house.

But I was really astonished when, years later, in 2001, another "public view" event happened for me, when The Globe and Mail ran an essay I'd written, "Requiem for a Vehicle", about the career of our family car, a 1981 Toyota Corolla four-door sedan, on their "Facts & Arguments" page. It appeared in the--you guessed it--March 9 edition. I submitted the essay in January, and had no idea whether it would be published, or when.

What does it mean? I don't know. But when something occurs and recurs, especially something so unlikely, in such a pointedly insistent way, it seems to be begging to be noticed. I have noticed it. But the significance of it eludes me.

My birthday? Lovely, thank you--I had an excellent time, and received some excellent presents. I started drinking one of them last night.

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  • Read your cogent, well-reasoned letter, a refreshingly sharp point of view from the hysterical idiocy of letters dealing with wild animals and human settlements in Southern California.

    Happy Belated Birthday! d:)

    By Anonymous dayya, at January 27, 2007 1:46 PM  

  • Many thanks, d., on both counts.

    By Blogger paulv, at January 27, 2007 3:13 PM  

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