A tiny treasure — “Geography: A Love Story” by Chelsea M. Marcantel
(I always like to begin with a disclaimer, in the interest of honesty.)
I met her through my time in Chicago theater, and have always been impressed by her works – from full-length plays to 10 minute pieces in short play festivals. I think she has a really unique and modern voice, full of humor and brains. Her pieces are consistently the highlight of any festival they appear in. If the best writers write what they know, she’s on the right track – writing about young urban-ites and their lives. As the recipient of several awards for her plays, clearly she’s doing something right.
However, she’s also a self-published author.
As I fully believe that reading is not limited by massive publishing houses, or constricted to what is traditionally considered a “book,” I am delighted to be able to review “Geography: A Love Story.” Essentially a short story, it clocks in at only 25 pages. Good things come in small packages though, and this tiny work is a gem.
Our unnamed narrator tells the tale of their parents meeting, separation, re-meeting, and struggle to stay together. They begin on a mountain and venture in their different directions to the city and the sea, eventually being brought back together on the mountain – the halfway point, and the only place that works.
“Geography” reminded me a little of being younger and being told stories. There’s no endless attention to detail and years, no description of the shoes worn on the day the two lovers meet. No, you’re being told a story. In fact, it’s practically like being told a fairy tale, albeit without magic elements. It wouldn’t be a far stretch at all to see this work as a one-person performance piece.
For more information on “Geography” and the career of Miss Chelsea, visit her website.