Go Ask Alice

Alice is standing in line at the post office when she realizes the man in front of her is a lawyer. It’s a long line, so she passes the time reading a novel on her cell phone. In this novel the heroine makes a terrible decision when she’s young, a decision which drastically changes the course of her life. The novel is about her alternate life, the life she would have lived, should have lived, if she hadn’t made that fateful decision. Alice and the heroine have a lot in common. Alice also made a terrible decision when she was young, one that drastically altered the course of her life. A decision that set in motion a life she never planned, never wanted. It happened the night she said “yes” to her hippie boyfriend. The night he asked her to run off to California with him. A decision that caused her to drop out of college, to give up her dream of going to law school, of becoming a lawyer. To bum around California for six months, living in the car with him, sleeping on the beach, experimenting with every kind of drug they could find. To get married in Vegas. To get divorced three months later. To end up working as a desk clerk in a hotel. And she’s still there. Ten years later. Still in California, still at the hotel, still a desk clerk. Tired of being unhappy, the heroine in this novel makes another decision, a good one this time. She decides to do whatever it takes to make her alternate life a reality. If someone were to ask Alice to be the heroine of this novel, if she could make her alternate life a reality, she knows what she would do. She’d move back to the mountains of Tennessee, use the money in her savings account to go to tech school, and become a legal secretary. Then the next time someone knocks on the door of her apartment in California, her landlord could say, “Alice doesn’t live here anymore.”  

Laura Stamps is the author of several novels, short story collections, and poetry books, including IT’S ALL ABOUT THE RIDE: CAT MANIA (Alien Buddha Press) and THE YEAR OF THE CAT (Artemesia Publishing). Muses Prize. Pulitzer Prize nomination. 7 Pushcart Prize nominations. Mom of 5 cats. Twitter: @LauraStamps16. Website: www.laurastampspoetry.blogspot.com     

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