“You go on. You just go on. There’s nothing more to it, and there’s no trick to make it easier. You just go on.” ~ Lois McMaster Bujold, Memory
When we think of loss, we usually think of death—“Sorry for your loss”. But loss can be the end of a friendship, moving away from home, divorce, illness, changing schools, growing older, losing a job, even something as simple as losing our innocence and naivety. Sometimes loss carves a hole in our lives and marks us with the absence of something we love but it can also create a space for growth and enlightenment. Bittersweet, tragic, humorous, loss takes endless and constantly evolving forms.
In one of life’s moments of verisimilitude, about half way through the first draft of the fourth book in the Warpworld series, in which so many of our characters experience loss, I found myself coping first with the deaths of my sister and father, and then moving away from Nelson, BC, my base camp since 2009. The parallel journey of loss—in real life and on the page—has been surreal and Josh has been along as friend, supporter, and co-worker for the entire crazy ride.
As Josh and I enter the home stretch to publication for the penultimate book in our saga (almost there, I promise!), we decided to once more host a blog series about the overriding theme of this installment. We invited our guests to discuss any aspect of loss that shaped their lives or, in the case of authors, their fiction. The submissions we received are poignant, comical, inspiring, and sometimes heartbreaking.
In a world that at times feels obsessed with having more, more, more, it is intriguing to see how much we gain when something is taken away, pulled from us against our will. The characters in the Warpworld series lose their freedom, their beliefs, their privilege, their homes, their families, and yet somehow, as Lois McMaster Bujold so beautifully expresses in her novel Memory, they “go on”. In the weeks to come, we’ll introduce you to some amazing real life people who have found their own way through loss, their own way to “go on”.
Our first guest post will be up tomorrow morning, written by SFF author, martial artist, and all around kick-ass human, Setsu Uzume. Should authors use writing as therapy? Tune in and find out!
Blood for water