Life Imitating Art
This morning life intersected with art.
I began writing a novel four years ago. Historical fiction. I researched. I went on a writing retreat. I crafted 100 pages of a very rough first draft. It was a struggle for my nonfiction brain. And since then, it has sat.
My protagonist is a man who suffers a grievous loss. In response, he quits his job (a banker) and becomes a security guard at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. From there, hopefully, intrigue and new life take shape between the modern day and eighteenth-century China.
To make my tale more realistic, I wanted to know what the life of a museum security guard is like. Here was a problem. I know museum curators. I know museum docents. I know museum administrators. I do not, however, know museum security guards.
We have now arrived at the point of this anecdote.
This morning I woke early, watched the sunrise over my backyard, and suddenly thought of my publisher-editor who had been helping me with my novel. I have not thought of my novel in a long time.
I then went to my cell phone to peruse the morning news and the stories that the Google algorithms think I will find interesting. This headline leaped out and smacked me in the face:
“What you learn about beauty and grief as a guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art."
Seriously? This man, Patrick Bringley, lost his brother in 2008. He then quit his job (events department at The New Yorker) and became a security guard at The Met for a decade. He has now written a memoir of his experiences.
Life intersecting with art. It seems there is a book I need to read. And one I need to write.