This is my second time participating in Writer in Motion, so for more background on that you can check out their page, or my retrospective summary of it here. Ok, with that out of the way, on to this year’s prompt.
When I first saw the photo prompt this year (seen above), my instinct was to listen to Folklore on repeat until a witchy, sapphic, horror story exorcized itself from my body. The only real question left was is this book about a curmudgeon leaving the chaos of the world for this distant cabin or a chipper somebody who finds this mountain dwelling grump and convinces them the world isn’t so bad and they should come back down the mountain.
I’ve never actually never written anything witchy or horror and I’m sorry to inform anyone salivating for these ideas I’ve suggested thus far, but I continued brainstorming. I understand that short stories are your time to branch out and try something new. That’s what I thought at first too. But then I also thought, today is not that day.
It was probably because, at the time of my brainstorming, I happened to be hiking up an obnoxiously uphill trail around the NY finger lakes region. Whoever decided waterfalls should be up high is the worst. That’s when I realized this story isn’t about the cabin and whether someone is coming or going from it. It’s about the journey up the mountain.
Photos by me (2020). From left to right: Watkin’s Glen SP, Buttermilk Falls SP, and Chimney Bluff SP
This week happens to coincide with my wedding anniversary (hence painful excursions up mountains for something cute and romantic like a waterfall). Anyway, the hike reminded me of another impromptu hike up a mountain that Husband and I went on in Banff National park in Canada. The set up was perfect for a romcom short story.
I ended up recasting the characters. Not that I’m not an amazing subject, but this was more fun with new characters. For my last WIM short story the two main characters were lovers to enemies in a fantasy pirate adventure, but for this one I’m looking at lovers to enemies and back to lovers again in a contemporary romcom.
I’ve already finished the first draft and plan on releasing it hopefully tomorrow (Aug 7). So get ready for a pessimist, a himbo, and a whole lot of references to Speed starring Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock.