I’ve always been more than a little obsessed with silver linings. Maybe it’s because I’ve spent a ridiculous amount of time in black clouds.
Over the years, I’ve learned that a silver lining can be fashioned into many tools, used every which way. It can be a beacon providing light to guide you onto your path. It can be a shimmering rope that enables you to climb out of a dark pit. It can be a priceless foundation, rising from the ruins, on which you build a new life. And this is only for starters!
So, it’s no surprise that silver linings show up in all my mysteries, which, beyond the usual fun whodunit conundrum, are “thrival” tales. Even in my first manuscript, silver linings took centre stage. (This story is destined to remain in my proverbial desk drawer forever, but its plot will give you a sense of what I mean.)
Its amateur sleuth, Angel, grew up in foster care. Even after she aged out of the system, tough breaks kept coming her way. The habit of looking for the silver lining in awful situations helps her find the strength to carry on. It even opens Angel’s eyes to new opportunities, including wonderful fresh directions for her life! Just between the two of us, that’s been the case for me too.
There are umpteen types of silver linings in this book, as there are in real life. For example, Angel rescues Cowboy the cat from the street, and he ends up transforming her life for the better. That’s true for many of us with “rescued” fur family: it’s not clear who’s saving whom. She never would have met Cowboy, though, if her life hadn’t fallen apart after becoming the prime suspect in a murder.
Incidentally, the character of Cowboy was inspired by my late cat Zeus (that’s him in the web header), who came into my life during and because of a rock bottom period. He got me through those rough years and enriched my life immeasurably–that’s a non-fictional fact. I continue to pay homage to Zeus in every mystery I pen: it’s the least I can do to say thank you.
Please consider sharing your own silver lining (s) by posting a comment. New to this sort of outlook on life? Give it go! Just rummage around for anything good that came about from something not so great. It might surprise you how much this perspective can help.
Spreading the news about that unexpected gift could boost someone else’s spirits and help them get back on their feet. Need a pick-me-up yourself? Read another’s post. That’s a two-for-one silver living deal. I really love a bargain, don’t you?