Secrets & Wisdom – Ian Gouge
‘Secrets & Wisdom’ started life in 2016 as a project with a specific design. The idea was to write a series of short stories, each based on one of the traditional Olympian Gods and on one or more of their individual characteristics. In addition, each story would contain within it either a ‘secret’ held close by the protagonist, or the demonstration – or otherwise! – of ‘wisdom’ / self-knowledge in some form or other.
Over time, as the original project progressed, the reworking of some additional material – both modern and ancient – appeared to lend itself to the general theme, and so the notion was born to expand the brief of ‘Secrets & Wisdom’ and to create a slightly wider and more eclectic collection of short stories.
From the original project, “Angela”, “Anne”, “Hester”, “Hobart” and “Westminster” have made it into this volume (the remaining seven Gods currently lie dormant until they are awoken at some point in the future!).
So what is the genesis of the rest of material?
There is a considerable variety in the style and length of the stories here – in the latter, they range from 2 to 40 pages long!
Some pieces – such as “My Dear Polly” and “Vinno” – had seen many anniversaries prior to being dusted off and re-worked for inclusion. Inevitably, a number were, on first drafting, a little like the unwanted guest at a party whose presence makes one feel slightly awkward; however, after a few drinks and a make-over, they suddenly become best friends!
“How Does It Start?”, “Stanley Grice” and “A Strange Kind of Map” are reasonably recent stories. At over 13,00 words, “How Does It Start?” is the longest story in this collection, and quite possibly one of the ‘star turns’.
Note: not a Coverstory books original