- Born Linda Marie Cassells, my named changed over the years. I was called Miki in high school by close friends. My name was changed to Charity while a member of the Children of God in the 70's and then changed to Caridad, while living in Costa Rica. I began writing this Memoir In June 2010. I invite you to join me in the writing, editing, publishing and marketing journey.
Thursday, September 27, 2012
My writing journey continues as I polish scene after scene, chapter after chapter of my manuscript, Unstoppable. My Journey to the House of Hope. I am honored to be working with Linda Joy Myers from the National Association on Memoir Writers (NAMW). Her coaching is making me dig deeper into memory and I am learning to write vivid scenes, not just "the facts." Scenes that will allow you, the reader to see, smell, hear and feel with me. Below is what may be the first part of Chapter One. I say "may be" because the writing is not over until it's in hardback. I'm looking for a chapter that will hook the reader (you) into wanting to read more. Please check out this beginning and tell me what you think. I look forward to hearing your comments. Thank you! Linda
October 19, 1972
Dear Mom and Dad,
I’m in jail. We were arrested last night after singing to a big crowd in the town square here in Merida, Mexico. After our last song we talked to the teenagers gathered in the plaza and then walked back to our vans, laughing and talking. We were suddenly surrounded by armed policemen who ordered us into the vans and drove us here to the jail.
I’m sitting on a filthy, cold, concrete floor in a small, narrow holding area with three other girls. We’re outside a jail cell occupied by six brothers from our commune. The drunk-tank is on my right. It reeks of alcohol, urine and vomit. We don’t know why the police arrested us or how long we will be here. I have to use the bathroom, but there is only one toilet and it is out in the open.
Your daughter, Linda
“Mayra, are you awake?” I whispered. “I need you to hold up this newspaper for privacy while I use the bathroom.”
“Mayra’s asleep,” Esther whispered back. “I’ll go with you, I need to go too.”
Toilet duties completed, we lay back down and tried to sleep. I took in short, shallow breaths to avoid inhaling the fetid air around me. A symphony of snores from the drunk-tank broke through moments of silence. The old newspapers, my bed for the night, offered no cushioning on the damp cement floor.
I didn’t feel fear, just confusion as to why we’d been arrested——and I wondered when the police would let us go. Mayra, Esther and Sarah, my commune sisters, huddled nearby, equally uncomfortable.