What is this book? How do I read it?
What would you do if your 6-year-old sister was sitting next to you, while she was also talking to your parents in another room, in her mid-30s? What if you crawled through your brother’s bedroom window, into a girl who looked too much like you—and she told you this wasn’t your house? What if you had no control over your line through time?
These things happen. Even in the suburbs. This story is about a handful of people in the medium-size town of Wellesley, Massachusetts.
Think of this website like an open studio, me working while you walk around. Have a look, and please ask questions! I’m doing exactly what I would be doing if you weren’t reading it, except you are.
What’s it cost?
Nothing. Turns out monetizing this book makes me unhappy. I just want you to read it. I believe stories are better bartered for, anyway. If you want to support the project, please tweet about it, share it on Facebook, or tell someone you know, who also has a soft spot for time travel stories.
Who are you?
Everyone’s bios are right here.
What’s its story? How’d this start?
While I was at it, I wanted to evict dreams of my childhood house. They wouldn’t leave me alone. I wrote a few poems. I Googled a few place-names—you know, for spelling, to make sure so and so lived on Such and Such Road. I found a 125th Town Anniversary website, which had a little town history, from the Historical Society. It sounded alien to me. I suddenly realized I’ve never been taught a damn thing about my hometown. That website literally changed my life.
The dreams continued. When I was a kid, I used to dream of running away from the house. Sometimes a few nights a week. Now at night, I was approaching it. Before I knew it, I was inside. I wrote more, about the town, about growing up. A sort of “getting this on paper will help me past it.” The poems like little episodes. The dreams continued.
After a few months, the characters—a boy, his sister, their brother—started defining their own attitudes, experiences, and opinions. It’s less that I became friends with them. More like I’m their biographer now.
I think when I dream of the house, I dream myself to one nearby. I don’t meet them, but other inhabitants of a house that occupies the same geographic space as their house, and mine. Sometimes there are rooms where I don’t remember them.
For a while I was an intruder; when someone found me, out I went. After a year or two, and six months of the dream-house uninhabited, we settled on some kind of deal. I could come and go. Then I would show up in my old bedroom with just a few boxes left to pack, and too busy, too tired to do it.
Lately things have been getting interesting again. In late 2013 Estuary and Freshwater met me in a hallway and introduced themselves. We shook hands. I gushed. In early 2014, I dreamed my best friend (here in Albuquerque) was in the kitchen (there in Wellesley) and firmly aware that I was dreaming, I asked him who he was. He gave me the name of a woman I’ve been looking for ever since.
Many people, and at least a few not-humans, have made this book what it is (and has been). Each of the persons below was responsible for a breakthrough in my understanding of this story. This book simply couldn’t exist in this form without their compassion, assistance, stories—and in those remarkable cases, above-and-beyond willingness to talk about the house we at some time all called home. In your way, each of you is a prophet of this story:
Walter and Mary, and Sue
Jill and Gladys Milroy
Lee Francis IV
Dr. Dan Longboat