I usually work on my book, The Matchstick Girl, in the fall and winter. It’s kind of a Christmas story, and I don’t feel like writing in it until the seasons start changing. Here’s another excerpt from it (somewhere in chapter 2):
Sleep’s hard to come by when you’re afraid of losing a year. I’d slept most of my life, so I avoided it as much as possible during the precious 25 days of my awakening.
When I woke up, the sun still sat hidden behind the horizon, leaving a great gaping darkness that characterized my world. The hotel clock said it was 5:53 a.m., so I put on my clothes from yesterday and let myself out of my room.
It’s amazing what darkness does to humans, chasing them into their caves and huts and houses where they huddle around a fire—or TV—until the sun rises again. The difference between light and dark might be a matter of a few minutes, a lightening at the edge of the world and the turning from black to dusky blue, but humans seems to wake up at that glimmer of the sun.
Humanity comes alive with the light. We need it in our souls. No matter how dark or depraved the human race becomes, light touches something inside of us, inexorably stroking a divine spark that recognizes it.
The human soul was not made for perpetual dark and cold.
I’m being punished.
It’s the only explanation that makes sense. Why else would I wake every year in the depths of winter, where the nights are long and the days cold?