Companion to an Untold Story #2020

Companion to an Untold Story By Marcia Aldrich Companion to an Untold Story When Marcia Aldrich s friend took his own life at the age of forty six they had known each other many years As part of his preparations for death he gave her many of his possessions concealing his
  • Title: Companion to an Untold Story
  • Author: Marcia Aldrich
  • ISBN: 9780820343372
  • Page: 360
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Companion to an Untold Story By Marcia Aldrich When Marcia Aldrich s friend took his own life at the age of forty six, they had known each other many years As part of his preparations for death, he gave her many of his possessions, concealing his purposes in doing so, and when he committed his long contemplated act, he was alone in a bare apartment.In Companion to an Untold Story, Aldrich struggles with her own failurWhen Marcia Aldrich s friend took his own life at the age of forty six, they had known each other many years As part of his preparations for death, he gave her many of his possessions, concealing his purposes in doing so, and when he committed his long contemplated act, he was alone in a bare apartment.In Companion to an Untold Story, Aldrich struggles with her own failure to act on her suspicions about her friend s intentions She pieces together the rough outline of his plan to die and the details of its execution Yet she acknowledges that she cannot provide a complete narrative of why he killed himself The story remains private to her friend, and out of that difficulty is born another story the aftershocks of his suicide and the author s responses to what it set in motion.This book, modeled on the type of reference book called a companion, attempts to find a form adequate to the way these two stories criss cross, tangle, knot, and break Organized alphabetically, the entries introduce, document, and reflect upon how suicide is so resistant to acceptance that it swallows up other aspects of a person s life Aldrich finds an indirect approach to her friend s death, assembling letters, objects, and memories to archive an ungrievable loss and create a memorial to a life that does not easily make a claim on public attention Intimate and austere, clear eyed and tender, this innovative work creates a new form in which to experience grief, remembrance, and reconciliation.
    Companion to an Untold Story By Marcia Aldrich
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      Marcia Aldrich

    About "Marcia Aldrich"

    1. Marcia Aldrich

      I was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and raised in that very spot by my parents and half sisters, a story told in Girl Rearing I graduated from Pomona College, earned a doctorate in English at the University of Washington, and now teach creative writing at Michigan State University From 2008 to 2011 I edited Fourth Genre, one of the premiere literary journals featuring personal essays and memoirs In spring 2010 I was the Mary Routt Chair of Writing at Scripps College in Claremont, California where I lived in the Hut with goldens Omar and Quin , and in that same year was named Distinguished Professor of the Year by the Presidents Council, State Universities of Michigan.

    463 thoughts on “Companion to an Untold Story”

    1. Every entry in this abecedarian companion book aches with awareness awareness about friendship, about suicide, about plans for life and for death , about language, about nihilism, about ephemera Aldrich deserved to win the AWP award for nonfiction for this book I don t know how it would not have won, given the topic and form One of the intriguing parts The footnote on page 183 is fascinating, from a reader writer point of view it s about how an agent wanted her to fictionalize this whole thing [...]


    2. Aldrich s book explores the life and death of a friend of the author, a man who carefully planned for and then took his own life The book is as much about the author s own sense of mourning, anger, and confusion brought on by the suicide as it is about the man who has died His preparations for death are meticulous, as he slowly gives away every possession he owns, says his goodbyes, and finally takes his life in his completely empty apartment Aldrich asks the questions many of us ask when a love [...]


    3. Not every writer would be able to pull off a book like this, and I don t know how much attention Aldrich has received for her effort apart from winning the AWP Award for Creative Nonfiction but I suspect that it isn t what it deserves Yet, Companion to an Untold Story is not a project that set out wishing for accolades Let s be honest, writers, we won t turn down praising recognition of our work Though I can only infer her intentions, it seems to me that Aldrich wanted this book to be the best w [...]


    4. This is a careful consideration of the consequences suicide causes It holds no answers to what it admits is the central human question Why live if life is absurd It presents the concern with a combination of stoicism, lyricism and meta narrative that offers a reading experience I imagined to be akin to the suicidal s self consciousness wrapped inside a survivor s enigmatic guilt There is mastery here where metaphor sings long after its presentation e.g The observation of fledgling eagles killing [...]


    5. I blogged about this book, because it had me thinking so deeply and in important ways Here s the link to the post applewordkiss 201But in case you don t want to read that, just read the paragraph I quoted, which is so wise and smart I m still thinking about it In the rituals of mourning, we substitute a final resting place, even one so unmarked as the sea, for the actual place of death We do so to write over the terrible image of trauma Substitution of place is our profound device in death and i [...]


    6. Companion To An Untold Story, written by Marcia Aldrich is a heart tugging creative nonfiction piece written in ABC form While working your way through the alphabet, one comes to learn about the life of the author, her husband, and the life and work up to and aftermath of her friend s suicide Throughout the book, the reader continuously learns about the life of the narrator and the friend whom she is grieving the loss of The book is almost in a threaded form as well, as the narrator transitions [...]


    7. It took me several tries to get into this, probably because of the form While it s something different, and aptly conveys the confusion and disarray of grief, it felt like it was lacking something While being incredibly personal, it was also very distant, which may have been the thing that bothered me most.


    8. Companion blends the freedom of a choose your own adventure story with the somber content of the loss of a close friend The format is engaging and expertly executed The matter of fact nature of the entries tell as much with their silences as with their facts.


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