13 March 2009

Plot Authentic Details

The Middle of every story begins with the entrance to the story world itself. The more exotic and unusual this world, the better the read. 

List sights and sounds, smells and tastes, texture and mood of the setting of your story. 

First list may be general and generic. Refine the list as you refine drafts. Little-by-little find the exact right authentic and unusual and historically-just-right word, detail, object, sensation...

Each day draws me deeper into the exotic and unusual world of a premiere surf spot, The Hook at Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz, California.

The Hook
  • Mean age range: 25-30 years old
  • Principal occupation: surfing
  • Palm trees tower 
  • Cypress trees sway in the bay breeze
  • Fog horn blares
  • Gulls cry
  • Surfboards stick out from truck beds, latched atop car roofs
  • Boys dressed head to toe in black zip by like seals astride bicycles built for two = boy and surfboard
  • Nightly news tracks high and low tide each day
  • The aroma of bacon, eggs, and hash browns rolled in flour tortillas waft from a shack known for "rolling fatties"
  • Girls in uggs, cotton sun dresses, and hoodies 
  • The smell of seaweed at low tide
  • Snippet of conversation: "Hey, dude. The sun's coming out. I might have to go surfing."
  • Mexican music floats in on a hazy layer of marine warmth

Thematically, the place reeks of youth and movement and the power of nature, though I have yet to mention the sea...

What are some authentic and unusual details of your story world??