I recently finished watching a television show on Netflix, "Being Erica." If you've never watched it, it's a mix of all my favourite things. First, there's a constant theme of do-over. Erica, at the bottom moment of her life, meets Dr. Tom. But he's no regular therapist - he can send her back to relive moments of her life, and do them differently. What starts with Erica going through her life of regrets progresses into a larger story, complete with a mystery, a progression of the "magic" of time-travel, and the growth of Erica herself through several major phases of her life and confidence.
I freaking loved it.
Second chances, as you know, are huge for me in fiction. Also, the magic of time-travel is done so well. And to be at the end of your life and wonder if there were things you should have done differently, well... how wonderful would it be to actually get a "do-over?" Or how tragic. The series definitely explores both sides.
"Deserves," by Joe Formichella
The next story in the Saints + Sinners: New Fiction from the Festival 2011 anthology is "Deserves," and it's very much about a man at the end of his life, looking back and - if not quite regretting - thinking that there's always that one more thing to say or do.
It's a touching story, and I have to say that I'd love to find - at the end of my life, after a very long, long time - the courage to do something this selfless. I tip my hat to Mr. Formichella, for writing such a wonderful story in such a short space, while still giving it a deep breadth.