Sunday, June 27, 2010


I have had one of the weirdest weekends of my life. So much so that people have said, "This sounds like something out of a book."

In fact, it does sound an awful lot like the book I just finished, U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton. Her PI, Kinsey Millhone, first encountered her estranged family a few books back. She always considered herself a loner since her Aunt Gin died, and now she's being invited to a family gathering to meet the grandmother she thought had rejected her.

This morning I received an email from a total stranger. A stranger, except that we shared the same maiden name. She said she had received my information from my half-brother who had been "very excited" to locate me at last. She was my father's first cousin. She included enough information to make her statement believable.

Jolt. My father died 11 years ago. Jolt. My half-brother and step sister, whom I thought weren't concerned about me, and hunted me down. Jolt. My cousin introduced me to 38 more cousins on Facebook. Jolt. My stepsister invited me to come and visit.

I feel like I'm Kinsey in my own personal novel.

Will any of this show up in a book some day? Probably. I don't know how I feel about it all yet.

What part of your writing stems from personal experience? Do you know of any true life stories that are weirder than fiction? As any editor will tell you, it's not enough to say "but it really happened that way." The author has to make it believable.

Feel free to share some of those strange, humorous, eventful circumstances that have threaded your life.

FYI: Check out for an interview and giveaway of my latest release, Prodigal Patriot.


  1. How strange and exciting...I hope it all works out for the best!

  2. Boy, Darlene. This is great fodder for a book! I hope all goes well with this new side of your family. I've got a half-sister floating around out there who I haven't seen since she was two. Maybe something will come of that some day.

    Back to writing. What part of my writing stems from personal experience? Hmm. I'd have to say no one particular part does. It's pretty much a mixture. I can see a glimpse of someone I know in one of my characters, but it's just a glimpse and no more than that. I can see things that are happening in a story that can be similar to something that's happened to me, but again, it's not the entire story, it's just a piece of the plot. So, I'd say there's quite a mixture there. I have a little bit of everything sprinkled throughout.

    Great thoughts, Darlene! Thanks for sharing. :-)

  3. I know what you mean, Sandi. All my work contains tidbits of me. It's bound to.