The value of Tripio


The value of writing Tripio  

 My coffee is weak this morning. I have already had my double espresso and as the clock passes 6 a.m. I am clear headed and ready for a long day. Later this afternoon I will be headed to my “Building your own Blog” class at the Indiana Writers Center. As I produced this content, this blog is mostly a concept.                                                                    

 I put down my weak-ass drip coffee (I think I need a new brewer since I just discovered a small puddle of water next to my brewer a minute ago) and began to collect relevant notes for my blog class. I noticed that I have three folders entitled “Chicago Days”. One is black, one is green and one is beige. Curiosity got the better of me and I began to look though the beige one which is oldest and most beat up one.

Used Books for sale

I hadn’t looked these pages over since spring of twenty seventeen. So, I had a go. After just a couple minutes I came across the page that became the opening of Tripio. It is not the prologue, which is younger by nearly twenty seven years. This is the opening passage of Tripio, where Jay is “sitting at my writing desk, shirtless on a muggy day in Chicago.”


Re-writing and editing changed this passage to some degree. In reading the passage twenty eight, now close to thirty, years later, I am struck by many thoughts. Perhaps the least disputable one of them all is that when I sat down at my typewriter in my second floor apartment in Lakeview that day, I did not do it with the intention of starting a novel.

That fact that it happened, for me, is what is as interesting as the actual writing of the novel itself. I see the words on the page. The page is aged and stained and a large piece on the middle right hand side is chipped off. The words on this page have stayed the same. I have changed them. That is the only way it makes sense to me. How else could this passage become the beginning of a novel called Tripio?

Not the sticker price

More recently Tripio has changed. As soon as it came from my editor as the final assembly, I began thinking about publishing it. It is the thing to do, right?  Like I said earlier that was not on the mind of that angry young man at his typewriter in Lakeview nearly three decades ago. His words have stayed the same, but he has changed. Hasn’t he?

I would prefer to conclude that I have uncovered the better Jay. The Jay who was there all along and needed to be uncovered. I know a second thing for sure, that the writing of Tripio has been an essential and vital part of that journey. Which is, for me, the real value of Tripio, published or not.

This is a repost for National Coffee Day 2023



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