Proverbial Woman, Chapter 4, Part 1

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First Three Days of my Book Tour

“So. Ms. Romero, the caption inside the jacket hails it as an interesting read for a first time author,” he says as he places it back down on the table. “Do you expect a lot of women to identify with characters of this caliber?”

“Yes. I think they will. Have you read it?” I asked.

“Of course… I don’t think I would be qualified to give this interview if I hadn’t,” he replied, before asking, “How did you come up with the title, Proverbial Woman?”

Realizing that any interviews that followed would probably play off of any negative responses I gave, I knew I had to make my answers count for something more than just good press. Momentarily pausing as I considered an adequate response, in a fainting moment of hope I suddenly felt inspiration descending upon me.

Releasing a gentle sigh, I softly began, “Proverbial woman… she lives a life of choices, all of which are of her own. With dignity she suffers through consequences, as she embraces her trials and moves on. She’s well aware of her complexities, while viewing them as being a part of what she is… a woman of contradiction, no less of what truth prevails. She is kind, and consistently forgiving. And expects the same of others. She is loved, and what love is to suffering- an un-yielding part of grace, that reminds the world of what it means to be emotionally alive.”

“My dear young lady, you speak highly of a woman’s worth. How did you come to know of these things without first experiencing them?”

Gazing back at him with a puzzled expression settling upon my face, I slowly answered, “It’s just something that I know. Something that as a woman I can identify with.”

“Wow. Well…” he added, as he smiled while tapping his fingers on the book.

“Eloquently said. I see those things in my wife when I watch her with our three daughters. It must truly be a beautiful thing to experience when you know.”

“Yes. It really is. I’ve learned a lot just from watching my mother with my father. I’ve shared their journey down the spiritual side of love. I’m just thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience their story and the emotions behind my mother’s tears.”

“So. Salvation… was it what they found at the end of their journey? Or was it something they found in one another?” he asked, as he peered into my eyes.

“No. They found it in one another. During what turned out to be their last days.”

“In the book your character said, ‘you’ve felt the pain of your mother’s mistake. But you could also identify with why she did what she did.’ Would you say there is a little bit of that Proverbial Woman inside of you?’” he asked.

“Yes. Definitely. I sometimes feel like my life is a forever-revising piece of prose detailing the contradictions of my heart. I’m constantly trying to search out unresolved issues relating to matters of my life, particularly those of my heart.”

“I’m sure there are many women across America that would agree with how you feel,” he added, as he began jotting down a few notes.

Not quite sure how to interpret his last comment, being that he is a man. In a fleeting instant I found myself questioning his level of experience. “Please forgive me if I may appear a little too forward, Mr. Wolfe. Exactly how long have you been interviewing female authors?” I asked.

Clearing his throat as a surprise look swept across his face, he then courteously smiled as he said, “Actually, aside from the thirteen years I’ve been a reporter. And countless freelance jobs I’ve done for some of the top magazines and ladies journals around, I would say well over twenty or so. But you’re the first freshman author I’m having the honor of engaging.”

“Oh. I’m sorry.” I replied, in an embarrassing tone.

“No. It is quite all right. Actually I find you to be quite an interesting person. Unlike some of the other folks I had the misfortune of sitting across from.”

“That bad, huh? …”

“You don’t know the half of it. At least you are more open to questions about yourself. By being that way the public would be more inclined to relate their experiences with those of your characters. Yet the beauty of the story is its fiction is your reality. It is like your character is stepping out of the novel and continuing on with life.”

“Wow! That’s interesting. I never looked at it from that perspective.” I added. Momentarily retreating into my thoughts as we both sat in silence. As he descended upon his pad and began writing with a sense of urgency, I aimlessly watched as the mid-morning crowd dwindled in as the staff greeted and sat them down within proper time.

“I’m sorry. Can I order something for you?” he asked, as he glanced over just long enough to catch my response.

“No. I’m fine. Thanks.”

“Are you sure? This is where I come to eat whenever I’m here in San Francisco. The Grilled Salmon they serve here is covered in a Red wine sauce that makes you want to double-dip every time you bring a piece to your mouth. It is always fabulous. It is to die for…” he added, as his eyes shifted back to his pad.

“I’ll have to try it some other time. It sounds delicious…” I added.

“Please forgive me, I can sometimes have a million thoughts working all at once.” He apologizes, as he continued writing. “I’m trying to get everything down. Please bear with me, I have just a few more questions.” He added, sensing my anxiety.

“Its okay, take your time. Susan said you’re very thorough in what you do.”

“I guess I can take that as a compliment,” he jokingly replied. Looking up from his pad, before adding. “Okay. I read nearly three quarters of the book over the past few days. Since then I haven’t had the opportunity finish it. Without disclosing the ending, what can you say about the way it concludes? Meaning…what revelations should your readers expect to experience from its characters after they’d finished it, as they go to bed with it on our minds?”

“Well… In the midst of unfolding events the story begins to take on a life of its own. At that point it starts to address a fear that is considered a natural part of life. No one wants to be left alone to die. And it’s through our experiences with love and forgiveness that many of us come to understand time as either an ally or foe. In that sense, it is ultimately the choices we make that reveal how we choose to grow in love and in life. Often taking cues from family and friends that make of our inner circles. When things appear to go wrong in their lives, it is often we who find ourselves re-visiting lessons of our own past that once came about under similar circumstances. It is in the wake of these moments special bonds are established. You see it everyday with mothers and daughters. Especially when healing hearts transcends beyond love and discover the true source of their strength. Not to completely give away the ending, but sometimes the one who is perceived as the weaker one in a marriage or relationship, can often turn out to be the stronger of the two.”

“That is true. I can’t wait to get home and finish reading it,” he remarked, as he jotted down a few things. Peering above his frames as his head remained tilted and hovering over his pad. In a soft tone he asked, “In her final days, what was conversing with your mother like?”

“Some days were good. Others were bad. And then there were those that were beyond description. On the good days she would recall fond memories of their union as if they were poetic sonnets written by the world’s most romantic writers of centuries past. When she spoke her voice was subtle, and yet tender like the sweet, soothing sound of a Mandolin. I would sometimes lose myself in the course of her words, and the melody of her heart.

During those other times I would see in her eyes the pain of a dying love, as her illness would further incapacitate her. Often she would return from extended periods of near death unconsciousness. And each time she would open her eyes, and in a crackling tone of voice murmur my father’s name. On several occasions I painfully watched her cry out for him. Repeatedly in a strenuous strain of breath she would sigh with whimpering sounds, as she would ask in a fainting tone of voice, ‘Where is he?’”

“Its okay…” he whispered, sympathetically.

“I’m sorry. Every time I think of those moments… I’m sorry. It was a painful time for all of us,” I added, wiping the tears from my eyes.



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