Reading through old journal entries and found this gem. I scribbled it down when the first images of Oliver came to me, back in 2007. Who knew it would take at least five years until I began writing Oliver’s journey. And oh how things changed along the way. I like looking back, reflecting. Because it helps remind me that the journey, though long and wavering, is worth the ride. It’s only on the ride when you find those sweet points. Discover those characters. And find the essence of your story.
(I’m exposing this as is — no edits. And I like it that way. The rush of a story hitting you and your fingers flying so quickly over the keyboard there’s no time to go back and fix the errors. So here it is. Errors and all.)
June 16, 2007
Oliver is an 8-year-old boy who wakes up one morning high up on a hill out in the middle of nowhere. The setting is beautiful. Striking colors—bright yellow hills and stunning cobalt sky. He’s tan. He’s got super dark brown hair that’s short and plastered to his face. He’s got small facial features but big hazel eyes. He’s wearing white linen clothes that are lose and drapy. The pants fall to his ankles and the top just to the edge of his arm. He’s quiet. He doesn’t say anything, just looks around. I feel like he doesn’t know anything. That he has flash backs of things that he can’t figure out or decide if they were just dreams or not. It’s like he was placed on this earth at 8-years-old.
Who is he? And why was he where he was? Who put him there?
Who is he? He’s a normal kid. He can’t be a normal kid. Well, why not? Because he was placed out here by someone for some reason and that’s not normal. Ok. Fine. Then why would you think he’s placed out there? Uh. See? It’s not that easy to think why he’s not normal, huh? Ok ok ok. Go on. Thank you. See, he’s this normal kid. BUT he has a secret. Ok. He knows a lot of things about a lot of people. The catch? He can’t remember any of it. Someone wipped out his memory. But other people will be trying to get him to remember it. So they can gain I don’t know, money, power, something.
So wait. Is this magical at all? Maybe. But it’s definitely different. It seems more sci-fi than fantasy. More House of the Scorpion, you know? So no wizards? No magic? I didn’t say that. I think if anything, magic would be used differently. Like with objects or all speaking and then with hands. Or people buy magic or grow it or harvest it or something. or little kids have magic and it slowly dies away as they grow older so kids are very important to the community? Huh. That would be interesting. So maybe this small community finds this little boy and they flip out like “look! A kid! Magic!”