How does an author create a story? Imagination.
Of course, there are other elements: timing, language, and the technical knowledge necessary to put down the words. But the first thing needed is imagination.
Everyone has that, to some degree. Don’t you daydream?
My biggest problem with both, daydreaming and storytelling, is accuracy. Yes, yes, a dream is just that, and a story doesn’t have to be true, but even as a child—and still—I always wondered about the daily, mundane things that characters surely had to accomplish. Why didn’t anyone mention those things?
Kind of like in a movie—the hotel rooms are huge, the bad guys never stop to use the bathroom, and no one has to take time out to cook or clean!
This is why I find it hard to daydream. I keep stopping and thinking, “Wait, that couldn’t work! What about . . .” If you’ve read REDUCED, you’ll see that too—a lot of boring, day-to-day stuff. But I learned from that.
So now, with our recent farm purchase, I really can participate in The Reduced Series. Well, within limits. I certainly don’t plan on using any C4 . . . although, now I think about it, we do have that big trash pile and a couple other dumps around the edge of the woods. Hmmm.
I mean, Abby seemed to have no problem finding the stuff, but I think I might get in quite a bit of trouble if I went looking for it!
While we do have electricity, at least until SHTF, and that runs the well pump too, we could definitely get by without it. I’m used to cooking outside over a fire; I can make anything that I cook inside on a stove or in an oven. When we camp, I heat water for bathing and dishwashing, and very soon we’ll have an outhouse and a solar shower.
We already spend most of our time down there on the deck, but to be fair, we have no furniture inside yet. And being 20-30 minutes from any kind of store, we’re learning to plan ahead or do without.
The garden is proving to be a bit tricky, but mostly that’s a matter of time. One of the first things you should do when starting a homestead is ensure a food source. I have seeds, and seedlings here in St. Louis, but there’s a lot of cleanup work to do before we can get to that garden area.
And then there’s cleanup to do there, too, before we can mow and plow. So we’ll have a late garden this year, but the ground will be ready for next spring—a full acre, to provide enough food for a year and a bit more.
So while I doubt I’ll be out kicking ass and fighting the government like Abby did, I’ll surely be living out at Walt’s place . . .