In my daily journey through the blogs I follow I was looking at the blog of
mystery author, Anthony Bidulka, a few days ago and clicked on a link to the New York Times and the remarkable story of Trish Vickers. I went on to read stories about her in The Telegraph, The Mail and the Dorset Echo. Saskatchewan
Mrs. Vickers, 59 years old, resides at Charmouth and lost her sight because of diabetes 7 years ago.
She took up writing. Not using a computer she was able to write with a pen on paper with rubber bands stretched across the page to keep the lines separated.
Initially she wrote poetry and then turned to writing a novel.
The Times stated:
Mrs. Vickers told reporters that her book, which she has tentatively titled “Grannifer’s Legacy,” centers on a woman named Jennifer who loses her job, her boyfriend and her great-great-grandmother, her lifelong mentor, and who then successfully rebuilds her life.
Her son, Simon, would visit each week to read back to her what she had written and a volunteer would type up her latest work.
She had a productive stretch of writing one week that had her complete 26 pages. Unfortunately, when Simon came to visit he had to tell her the pages were blank. Her pen had run dry as she started to write and nothing was on the paper.
I thought of how frustrated I get if I manage to lose a few pages on the computer. To have 26 pages disappear of handwritten work would be devastating. Every writer can relate to Mrs. Vickers.
When Simon and Mrs. Vickers could not come up with a means of restoring what she was written they called the
Dorset police and asked if the fingerprint section could help them.
The police offered to help and a female expert during her lunch hours, using lights at different angles to read the indentations left by the pen on the paper, was able to recover what had been written.
In The Telegraph she said:
“I could remember the gist of what I had written but there was no way I could have written exactly the same way again,” she said. “I am so grateful. It was really nice of them and I want to thank them for helping me out.”
It is a real life mystery story without a body in sight and a happy ending because of a dedicated member of the police going out of her way.