I love listening to Kurt Vonnegut tell stories. When I read one of his books, I’m there in the room with him, sitting cross-legged on the floor as he rocks in his chair. He’s grumpy because some war, and wants to tell me why. He begins way back at the beginning. It’s a story that he’s long forgotten but he tells it as if it’s more real than ever. Every so often he has to pause. He coughs into his cigarette.

I’ve always wanted to emulate that. I want to tell a story from that point of view, a grumpy old man in a rocking chair, smoking a pipe in front of a fire. Previously I tried by imagining that person writing a story. But now I realized, that grumpy voice becomes alive, when I imagine that person, not writing but telling a story. From that space, I can hear the conversation unfold. And my only job is to transcribe it.

So throughout 2021, I’m going to play with these different voices. Sometimes in my novel, sometimes in blogs, sometimes in texts. I will ask, how would Kurt Vonnegut say this text? How would Hemmingway tell this blog? And through trial and error, I’ll find my inner old man, rocking back and forth in his chair, angry about being quarantined for a year.