From Kristine Kathryn Rusch:
September 11, 2001 was a Tuesday. Here on the Oregon Coast, as in New York City, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C., it was a beautiful fall day. Sun out, clear blue sky.
And horrors, everywhere.
I was in the middle—quite literally—of writing one of my Smokey Dalton novels. Set in another terrible time in American history, those books are emotionally dark, hard to write, and harder, at times, to think about. On September 10, I had just hit one of the most violent scenes in the book, scenes that left me shaking after writing them.
I made notes for the following day, shut down my word program, and did not log back into it for ten days.
In those ten days, I watched in horror, searched for friends, gave money to other friends and charities that had come up specifically for the 9/11 victims and their families. I also put a cat to sleep. We hadn’t even known he was ill.
There seemed to be no respite. People I knew had lost loved ones, some of my friends had barely escaped with their lives, all of the companies I did business with were shut down, and no one knew what was coming next.
It felt like we were waiting for another, equally horrible shoe to drop.
. . . .
A movie, a comedy, came out that week (I can’t remember what it was) and it tanked. We had stopped using humor to cope. Our comedians took the week off, not returning until the following week, when they felt it was safe to crack a joke again. And even then—hell, even now—we do not joke about that period of time.
I found it hard to escape. Regular television shows were too violent or too pre-9/11. For a while, some TV programs and movies edited out images of the Twin Towers from old programming because everyone found looking at them just too painful.
I didn’t want to read my usual fare. Mysteries seemed too mundane, thrillers too violent, and romance novels too frivolous. Science fiction hadn’t predicted anything like this, and for that reason, I washed my hands of it that month.
Thank heavens for J.K. Rowling and Harry Potter. I had never read Harry Potter, and frankly, I wasn’t planning to. But I had the first book, and since nothing else was holding my attention (besides the tragedy), I started to read.
And escaped. Harry’s world is different enough from ours to shut out the horrors of the real world, and heal. I will forever associate those books with that need for healing.
I also credit them for teaching me about the value of fiction.
Link to the rest at Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Here’s a link to Kris Rusch’s books. If you like the thoughts Kris shares, you can show your appreciation by checking out her books.