Commentary: Prologue (Reprise)

There’s a little epilogue to my tale of sadness.  Originally I used the typical Prologue/Epilogue pairing.  Later I changed them both to Prologue to emphasize that they were sort of the same chapter as told before and after the events of the book.  I didn’t really like losing the song titles as chapter titles theme (though there are numerous songs with titles of “Prologue” and “Epilogue”), but compromised with the parenthetical “reprise” at the end.  Sometimes I think “Encore” would have been better…

Other tidbits:

  • I wrote this chapter out of sequence from the rest, probably just before starting the hospital chapters.
  • According to the old man, the sister never married the “first” time around.  So this new history isn’t actually setting everything back to how it originally was, but instead a third variation.
  • Note that her husband doesn’t have a name, whereas previously Nelson was the only named character in the entire book.  Note also that in the previous chapter the narrator tells us he’s naming Nelson because “hate needs a name.”  Does this mean that she has a different husband, or that her husband is still Nelson but he’s no longer hated?
  • This coda is intentionally ambiguous, and in this final commentary post I’m being intentionally coy.  Without giving too much of my intent away I’ll just say this:  I definitely know how the story ends, but I don’t know if this is actually the end of the story or not since there might be a sequel.  Until that’s decided, either interpretation above is valid.  (Ask me next February 29th and I might change my answer.)
  • There is only one musical reference in this short chapter, hinting at the fact that music may not be a big part of the narrator’s life this time around.

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