What the where?

Write what you know.  It’s an exhortation I usually manage to avoid by writing sci fi and fantasy.   When I write those, I’m the boss.  What I say goes.

But “Clearing the Way” is ‘contemporary’ fantasy.  In other words, it starts in the here and now, and works itself away from that to its final destination firmly planted in the post apocalyptic vision in my head.   And with that here and now, we run into issues.   Clearing starts in a city, and I am not a city girl.   I was born, bred and raised in Department of Defense captivity, behind the wire of Air Force bases.   I could write all sorts of material on the joys of being brought in for a curfew violation…at six a.m., but I have little grasp of an urban lifestyle.

Hubby, a Chicagoan, noted that the first draft of Clearing lacks ‘a place’ in the beginning.   I had deliberately left much of that hazy because I didn’t know and intended to come back to it later, because nothing will stop a story in its tracks like trying to do research in the beginning when all it wants to do is be set free to run.

When I imagine those opening pages, I see New York.  The problem is…I’ve never been in New Y0rk.   Neither has hubby.   Is it time to put Natty in a city we have much more  of a grasp of….Chicago….or is it time for some in depth research of a city like New York?   I guess the smartest thing is to take a better look at Chicago and see if there’s someplace there that fits what I see.


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