It’s been less than two weeks since the oncologist announced a family member “cancer free!” I think it goes without saying this was music to our ears after the more than two-and-a-half years we’ve been on this roller coaster ride of tests and chemo and drug interactions and surgeries and hospitalizations and falls and breaks…
Something else that came with this diagnosis was a terminal diagnosis on my time and energy. I quit writing, tossed in the towel, moped while I anticipated life was about to take a brutal turn. And since then I’ve been quietly juggling major stress between the “day job” and the role of caregiver, a title for which anyone who lucidly knows me could argue I’m not honorably suited. Let me assure you in situations like this, little gets done without the support of family and friends. In fact, I can’t imagine how fruitless would be any words of mine that could express my gratitude to all of those who have spent their time, energy, and prayers for us while my immediate family went through this ordeal.
I’m abashed to admit I uncovered a propensity to vomit a whole litany of reasons why I could never write another word and nobody would blame me. I could literally hear the platitudes: “Poor Jon Guenther. Wrote over 40 published novels but then life took a personal dump on him, and he had to give it up. Poor, poor sod.” Well, I definitely appreciated the sentiments even if the majority (or all) of them were the product of my arguably prolific imagination. It seemed easier to drink brews and binge-watch Netflix, go to a baseball game, work at all hours, or play 5-dollar pre-owned games on my Xbox 360 than sit down and knock out 500 or 1,000 words a night—as I was “wont” to do.
Let’s face it: a writer’s a writer, and by nature a true writer can’t not write even if the excuses and reasons to dodge said labors seem notably reasonable. It’s akin to emotionally running from oneself; any sane, reasonable individual can see such self-righteous endeavors will terminate at the same, barren mile markers of life. So after a very long hiatus and some false starts—plus several not-so-gentle reminders from colleagues that my excuses are on the order of male cow doo-doo—I’m back in the game for good and I won’t let go this time. To coin a phrase:
They can have my word processor when they pry it from my cold, dead fingers!
I still think I have something to tell people and good stories in me, and at least a dozen or so fans out there still interested in the same. I know, there’s that self-effacing part of me again just lurking in the shadows. Look, maybe some new readers will come visit, and maybe a few more will return to the well for more of the same high adventure for which I’m known in the G-section of a few used paperback stores across the country. Regardless, these new beginnings will be founded in my current work-in-progress.
The Hashem Code
Set in the year 1962, a Nazi hunter is hired by a damsel in distress to race evildoers and a legion of demon warriors to a magic stone fabled to have properties capable of blotting the name of God from all history!