Theme: Recovery

I don’t write with themes in mind – they seem to appear after the fact. And usually someone else points them out to me. Often, I don’t feel responsible for what I write, the story just comes out. That it might have a theme or underlying “truth”…that’s just my subconscious I guess.

But I am always intrigued by lit mag contests and issues that feature themes. And very excited when something I have written falls within the scope of that theme and especially if it is chosen for publication.

That has happened with my story Shakespeare’s Garden. It has just been published in the July issue of r.kv.r.y.

At AWP in February, I met Mary Akers, a fiction author (Women Up on Blocks) and the publisher of the elegant and thoughtful online lit magazine r.kv.r.y. After reading more about the magazine, and looking over my stories, I thought Shakespeare’s Garden would be a good fit. I’m thrilled that Mary and her editors agreed!

I hadn’t thought of my story in terms of “recovery,” but reading the description of the magazine, it was as if I’d written the story to spec.

From the site:

r.kv.r.y. – comes from the dictionary definition of the word recovery: an act, process, or instance of recovering; a return to normal conditions; something gained or restored in recovering; obtaining usable substances from unusable sources.

To me, the recovery that happens in Shakespeare’s Garden isn’t the gentleman who suffers the stroke and learns to live with it. It’s his wife, who must learn to live with a life of shattered expectations. Something many of us can identify with, especially as we grow older and wonder “what could have been” or “if only”…

Reading the other stories and poems in the July issue of r.kv.r.y. displays just how broadly the term “recovery” can be applied.

I urge you to explore this and other issues of r.kv.r.y. Leave a comment to let me know what you think!

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