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Inspiration for stories comes from every direction for me. The inspiration for the current fantasy novel I’m writing came from having discussions with others, who, like me, played the original Dungeons and Dragons roll-playing game in the early 1980s. Instead of roaming the streets of our community and possibly getting into trouble on a Friday night when I was a teenager, I gathered with friends at our Boys and Girls Club. There, the director Peter Mortimer played Dungeon Master and sent us on quests and adventures.
From the age of 13 until about 18 or 19, we played every Friday night. Friendships were formed, skills were mastered and we walked away better for the experience.
While my first fantasy novel Shadows in the Stone was inspired by Dungeons and Dragons, it’s firmly set in a fantasy world of its own. The story I’m currently writing straddles both: this world and the fantasy world. It’s something I’ve always thought about doing but never did.
I want to have a blast writing it, and I’m going to share this journey with you. If you’ve ever played Dungeons and Dragons, I hope these posts and the eventual novel rekindles fond memories.
Currently, I have 33,079 words written for my current fantasy novel that will receive a title shortly.
For many years, I’ve driven past a sign that said “Ravencroft Lane”. I’ve never driven down the narrow dirt road tucked into the forest off the main drag between my house and our camp. However, each time I passed it, I thought, “That would make an excellent place name in one of my stories.”
The name conjured up magic, mystery and images of a place in a fantasy land. I waited years to use it, not knowing where it existed.
Then came Natural Selection, and I knew this place was here.
The small town of Ravencroft is located alongside a wide river in County Regal somewhere on the eastern half of the United States in the year 2051. The town and county is ruled by a self-proclaimed king, James Proctor. His father had staged a coup and seized power from the man who had established Ravencroft many years beforehand.
Natural Selection is now available in eBook and paperback format.
Just over a year ago, I saw a video on YouTube by a man who had crashed his small plane in the remote wilderness of Quebec on July 27, 2019. He survived because his plane had a parachute. I’d never heard of such a thing, so I did a little research on the subject and found CAPS, which stands for Cirrus Airframe Parachute System. Their website states, “The parachute system is designed to protect occupants in the event of an emergency by lowering the aircraft to the ground after deployment.”
Cool. Right? That’s what I thought.
Continue reading “The Plane Crash that Inspired “Northern Survival””
It had been a glorious August day in 1990. I had set out in my twelve-foot row boat around noon. The sun was shining and the water was placid. As usual I was alone, settled in the centre seat with my fingers wrapped around the blue oars. My boom-box sat on the seat in the stern on top of a sweatshirt and towel and beside my sneakers.
Most of the time I sailed barefoot. I loved the feeling of cool wood and salt water on my skin. I could climb in and out of the boat, walking through knee-deep surf, without worrying about wetting my rubbers.
Rubbers…I don’t recall owning a pair back then. I either went barefoot or wore my ocean sneakers. These were old sneakers I wore without socks to places I couldn’t go barefoot.
Continue reading “The Fog That Inspired a Story”