Saturday, September 29, 2007

Dear Mysta

We like to go antiquing now and then and I am always drawn to the dealers who keep postcards. Not for the side with the destination, but for the occasional note on the back. Funny how often there is no note though. Purchased in lieu of a photograph, I guess. But anyway, the ones that are written out are often interesting and generate story ideas for me. This week, I ran across a bunch from WW II. I guess the caught my attention because of the Ken Burns show. How sad to read these letters home from air, army and naval bases where men were being rushed through training to go to war.
Usually I prefer vacation communications though. Like this one I bought years ago dated 1912 and sent from Atlantic City to Brooklyn.
Dear Mysta.
I'm still intact. It's cold but fine, Yours, LC
Do you ever use things like this to generate stories?


Stephen Blackmoore said...

Haven't tried that, yet. hell of a writing prompt.

There's something inherently depressing about discarded postcards.

Somebody's life reduced to a scribbled note in a bin. All those disjointed worlds thrown together, waiting for somebody to pick them up again.

Aren't I cheery this morning.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The majority are blank, but there are some very odd things on some of them. They look like secret messages, especially the older ones. Although sometimes the ink is so faded that I imagine more arcane things then are actually there. Of course, that works too.

sandra seamans said...

Not so much post cards, as old photographs, wondering about the people in them, catching a glimpse of the world they lived in, wondering why nobody kept the family photos.

Our library and one of the local papers publish old news items going back a hundred years. Human nature hasn't changed much and those little pieces of history get me thinking "What if?"

john mcauley said...

I've thought about this all day [ between various sports broadcasts and listening to The Grateful Dead]. The random little things that can spark a story never ceases to amaze me: An intriguing old couch [small holes, big stains] by a dumpster and a disturbing newspaper article spawned a 250 word flash piece about middle aged poverty, a crime and an appearance by a recurring character named Sweaty Betty. Go figger. And there was the recent ruckus around here about Jimmy Hoffa that made me write about him- well, about part of him. This whole writing thing is a long strange trip...
John McAuley

pattinase (abbott) said...

And some places seem to generate ideas. The bus ride to work is unusually fertile although less so now with the cell phone chatter.
Poor Tigers, huh John?