Before this book, I knew Dave in a peripheral sort of way. He was that homicide detective that gave presentations to writing groups: pleasant enough, with a sense of humour and surprisingly patient. Dave’s schedule is no less crammed than everyone else’s, arguably more so with that whole time-sensitivity of murder investigations, yet he would always answer writer questions long after the allotted presentation time was up. He would also use his own brand of humour to offset the heaviness of the topic. For years he was that dude that graciously answered random law enforcement questions from us writers to more accurately depict characters or hammer out plot points.
Over this past year that random peripheral shifted into first person narrative. He’s still pleasant enough if there is an energy drink at hand, and his sense of humour is dark but entertaining the few times I’ve seen it off-leash. His patience has extended to my bottle-necked edits and I know to bring in humour when needed as there are indeed heavy parts to this book. A few weeks ago Dave mentioned in passing that he was getting an award.
So of course me being me, was all, “Dude, an award? That sounds cool. Can I come?” Writing in first person Dave is a constant exercise in appropriate coaxing: enough to be accurate without being invasive. Any chance to peer inside his world could only make the book stronger. More importantly though, an award from the Chief just seems like one of those things you go to to support your buddy and everyone who is receiving the honour. I went, and witnessed men and women, civilian and officers, honoured for their hard work, quick thinking, and acts of bravery. It was a discreet ceremony, and stronger for it’s brevity. The concise stories we heard, for me, only drummed harder everything that wasn’t said, like those pauses we talked about in the last post. It also kicked my butt to get these edits finished. This book is not an awards ceremony, but it delivers some parallel messages: the human spirit is an amazing thing to behold, our actions impact others, we can make a difference in another’s life, and giving a damn goes really, really far, just to name a few.
As mentioned a million times before, I’m not from the law enforcement world. I have to say, walking into a room full of men and women all decked out in their spiffy dress Blues made a pretty rad impression; there is a time and place for ceremony, this was totally one of those times. Congratulations to all of those honoured.
Thanks for checking in, we’ll have another post next week.