Writing the Dead: How Do I Write Someone Who’s Not Here Anymore?

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Stephan Maldonado

Aside from “apocalyptic fairytale”, one of the first descriptors that comes to mind when somebody asks about my novel is “fictionalized memoir.” True, I’ve never hung out with vampires and angels or been offered immortality by the Devil. I’ve never destroyed a city, and I don’t live in Los Angeles or have a girlfriend (ha!). But despite all the “fiction”, I still consider it to be the most honest piece of writing I have ever created. This is my story: a story of grief and evolution that I’m able to tell so honestly because I tell it through fantasy. At its core the novel is about acceptance of loss and empowerment through heartbreak, and each wild and ostentatious plot point simply helps me work through those in my own way (not to mention makes for a much better read). I suppose every good writer (let’s assume I’m a good writer)…

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