Following the writer’s brain to a story line.

Notes from Alexis: She is working on the Disappearance of EAB, her soon to be first novel. It is fascinating to me what it takes to get the writer’s brain to find a story line.


Dearest Lex,

Well, today is warm and looks to be an Indian summer after several days of fires in the morning. Got a letter from A. and I can’t figure how those folks are getting by, and it all gives me the willys.

Had my luncheon with L. and there was not one thing wrong with it. We went to library, and the Stevens Hotel has opened up again and she wanted to eat there, and then went to banks and Duffy’s. So why do I feel as if I have been run through a knot hole? This business of associating with people that you haven’t one thing in common and no deep affection is so tiring. The older I get the less patience I have for manufactured friendships.

This past month has tired me and that’s a fact. I can’t quite decide how to cure me. Have some tomatoes to can and have a new apple pie recipe I’m dying to try, but I’ll tell you the truth all my get up and go, got up and went.

Shall I tell you about EAB? Well, first off I decided Wendell would not go to Dartmouth which was the college in N.H. he probably would have gone to. Then I found a book about Dartmouth and changed my mind. Until World War I, it might have been OK but certainly not later. They were the fourth largest medical school in U.S., and one of his ancestors, his great-uncle Harleson was a doctor and went to Dartmouth (class of 1836 I think).

So then I found out Dartmouth didn’t and doesn’t have a school of pharmacy, which meant William and Wendell would have had to go someplace else, and I just got mad. It really upset me because I had assumed I could go to the library and just check out a book on the history of pharmacy. Well I couldn’t, but by poking about a bit I found an address to write to about licensing and so forth and the name of a school in Boston came up.

Now I really feel much better because it seems to me that Wendell is much more the Boston pharmacy school type than the Dartmouth type, so why did I get upset? The thing is this whole book is just working out so neat.

I went out to the Worden cemetery and then stopped at the Keno cemetery and came back and wrote it up. So lucky I did because I could see so plainly that the physical lay of the land is almost identical to Wellman and it was easy for me to get it clear in my head.

Have changed my mind about the ending, last night I dreamed about the ending and will have to get it written down so I can start working it up.

I am going to look at typewriters today. I am haunted by the Kay-Pro Word Processor and am going to send for a couple of books about word processors so I can investigate further.

So how have you been? And D. and did she start school? I like a little more substance in letters. I like details. You seem to think I’m not interested in things like that but surely you can see from my letters to you that I do. I suppose you cast about in your mind for something that you think would interest me, and discard most of them. Write all the discards. From them I will weave a tale.Love, Mom