What Are You Writing Now?

Hands typing on a laptop

I am currently working on my next novel. It's about something I’ve been thinking about for many years. I would like to write a novel about a young man in his early thirties that loses his wife, the love of his life, prematurely. The novel will examine his compelling struggle to determine if he can ever really love again.  Sure, he can marry again—but can he ever truly love again in the same way—to the same depth—or is something lost—or at least, held in reserve—forever?  

The overall theme is Love after Loss or Love after Grief. Love and grief are two emotions I have often reflected on and would like to delve into in more detail. I’m fascinated by the prospect of exploring the depth of human emotion regarding this complex topic. I would hope to discover some truths that would bring help and hope to people who have prematurely lost a spouse or have suffered through a painful divorce.

What is the working title and what is the setting?
The working title will be decided at a later date but might be: “To Love Again” or “Reservations of the Heart.” The final title will come last but this is what I’m thinking now. Regarding setting, I'm exploring Santa Barbara, California or an east coast location.

What are the specific questions you hope to explore in this novel?
In a nutshell, I want to explore these questions. If you have a great first marriage and you lose your spouse prematurely can you ever love the same again? How will your love be different? Can you ever love as deep? As passionate? As unconditional? Can you ever be as committed? As transparent? As unguarded? As natural? If not, why not? If so, how? Are there any emotional deficits? Comparisons? What adjustments must you make?

Why do you want to write this novel? 
While I believe we can love again. My father did not. He lost my mother when he was 44 after 17 years of marriage. He raised six children alone. He was a wonderful man of integrity. Yet, he could not or would not, give himself permission “to love again.” He honored her memory and quietly and privately demonstrated an enduring love for her until he died—43 years after he lost her. Not everyone could do that—not everyone should. 

This is, in essence, what I want to explore—to honor my parents, the remarkable love they shared, and to help others who have suffered devastating loss.

If you know any couples that should be interviewed on this subject of love after loss or love after a divorce, please reach out to me at jamescmagruder@gmail.com.

Please feel free to ask me a question, leave a comment, or join my mailing list by subscribing to my FREE newsletter, PAUSE MORE. RUSH LESS. below. We’ll talk about how to slow down your life to live it more fully.

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