I was always an avid reader growing up and especially loved books that had some magical element in them from time travel, to secret passageways, underground cities, forest creatures, etc. My father read me The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings series by Tolkien, and I especially loved his Golem voice. And, at lunch times my mother read me the C.S. Lewis series, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
As an adult, it’s not often that I get swept away by a book, which is terrible considering that I am a Librarian! But there is just something special about about children’s books, or perhaps the magic comes from reading with the awe and wonder of being a child.
A few winters back, after a Christmas reunion with my family that included pre-teen nieces and nephews, I was stranded on a Greyhound bus heading back to Vancouver from Golden, BC. There had been a snow storm on the Coquihalla highway, and we were waiting in Merritt for a new driver to arrive to swap out the current one, who needed rest.
I suddenly decided to write a winter story for my young relatives. As I tend to do, I wrote furiously for a week or so, and then the urge faded. It was set in the future, and I became stumped with trying to describe high tech advances (that I would keep discovering were already in production) combined with natural wonders and mystical powers. Developing the characters was a lot of fun, but daily life took over.
My laptop was recently stolen and while I wasn’t too phased about it, I did realize that my initial story had also evaporated. I did not save it anywhere, regarding the writing as just an experiment. This really bothered me, but I have since had a plot sprung upon me. So, that’s what I’ve been doing. Writing a very odd book that pulls together many elements that give me joy or provokes me.
Obviously, there is going to be a scene that involves a young girl competing in a Hare & Hound race through a desert, although it will be a “virtual” race through a futuristic gaming platform. She is seeking out a Hermit’s cave, avoiding a tacky Aladdin’s cave full of gleaming gold and sparkling diamonds, to find a guide who will lead her and her orphan friends into the seedy underworld of Salish City before they head north!
In the meantime, enjoy this vintage video of an original Hare & Hound race from 1967!