Thursday, November 21, 2013

Creative Writing

No one guessed that Nora Connolly was such a prolific and creative writer. Her prose moved a woman to tears...and on to a nervous breakdown.

The author of a ream of hate mail has now discovered that creative writing doesn't pay. Indeed, it's going to cost her a considerable amount of money.

Ten years ago, Ms. Connolly was considered a close friend by Eileen Nestor, residents of Gort in County Galway. Their relationship changed when Ms. Nestor started a new job, and suddenly she was the recipient of anonymous hate mail that suggested she was actually a man in drag, among other bizarre accusations. Some of Ms. Nestor's superiors at her place of employment also received letters disparaging the woman, who naturally became distraught. She felt helpless to stop the harassment, and had no idea who was behind the letter writing campaign.

Over the course of two years of constant bombardment, Ms. Nestor worried herself into poor health and a nervous breakdown. It was enough to drive anyone mad, to receive a letter every six weeks, to wonder what sort of job security she had when her bosses were getting hate mail and no doubt wanted it stopped. She held the job for two years before she was so broken that she had to give it up. And it wasn't as if she and her husband were so well off that they didn't need the income.
And a great place to write

Mr. Nestor went to the gardai to put a stop to the campaign, and a stroke of luck broke the case. Ms. Connolly sent a downloaded picture in one of her epistles and the guards were able to determine what website the photo had come from, which allowed them to determine which computer in Ireland had been used to obtain it. As simple as that, they traced the letters back to Ms. Connolly.

From there, it was a matter of searching the Connolly home to find the offending computer, and then lodging charges against Ms. Connolly.

Technically, there was no way to verify without question that Ms. Connolly had actually done the writing, and no one could figure out why Ms.Connolly would want to harass Ms. Nestor.

It is clear that Nora Connolly is a frustrated writer who, like so many others, cannot get her words published because it is near impossible to break into publishing. The woman has word-crafting talent, given the evidence at trial. Her prose drove a reader to the brink, which shows how compelling her sentences were.

Ms. Connolly was levied a very heavy fine, a sum of money that could have gone far if she'd used it to earn a master's degree in fine arts. Literary agents would have taken notice if she'd had such a stellar credential. She might have channeled her ability for good, instead of wasting her skill.

Epistolary novels are quite popular. Perhaps Ms. Connolly can channel her mania for writing and produce something for the masses, rather than an audience of one neighbor.

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