Thursday, April 2, 2009

Sometimes you get what you need

So, I've been toying with writing a prison story. It's been bugging in the back of my brain, but I've not been certain it's something I can or should write. I know the characters, they've got names. Their personalities are forming in my head and they're starting to talk a little. I have a half-ass plot (and all my plots start out pretty half-ass, I'm a seat of my pants type writer) with shot-callers and go-to guys and someone getting shanked in the yard.

However, we're talking a pretty "out there" environment for most of us. I've seen the inside of holding many times (no...used to work for the prosecution), but I've never been to a prison. I don't know what it feels like, smells like, sounds like. There's only so much Nat Geo's documentaries can help. So, I'd shoved this to the back burner.

Looks like the story wants to be written. I just got notice that I have to go about 3hrs north at the end of next month to take a deposition of a witness on one of my cases. While I'm not a big believer in fate...sometimes it's more than coincidence.


Ro DuBose said...

Guess you're destined to write that story, I'll be watching for it.

Amanda Young said...

Sounds like the making for another fabulous story, James.

Louisa Edwards said...

I'm not necessarily a big believer in fate, but I don't really believe in coincidence, either. At least, I think if you're open to what's going on around you, then the things that happen aren't random, they're useful.

Prison story sounds grim but interesting. I love risky stories!

Unknown said...

I hope it all works out, James. I've read a couple of prison stories and end up laughing through them. As a spouse of a correctional officer in a state prison (also myself being an ex-certified law enforcement officer), living 10 or our 15 yrs together on state property, and of course nearly all of our friends are in the field, I can tell you to be careful about the shows you watch as research. Also each state is very different in their rules and procedures. What I see in California prisons (on Discovery) is waaay different than here in FL.
The best people to talk to...correctional officers. Not the really hi ups, like wardens, but those who spend 8-12 hrs a day surrounded and out-numbered by inmates. Oh, and a jail atmosphere is much different than the state prison too.
Hope that helps. :)
Again, good luck!

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