For the past few days I’ve felt like I live in Seattle, or Ireland or the Amazon for that matter. It just kept raining! Every morning I’d wake up like I used to when I was a kid hoping for a white Christmas (OK, let’s face it I still do that)…I’d race to the window and peer out hoping for dry ground and rays of sunlight. And every morning I was met with disappointment or thunder.
Then I turned on the news and watched stories about flooding all over the country. Unsuspecting campers were swept away as they slept. Flash flooding took over neighborhoods in Oklahoma City. Apparently it was raining everywhere and I should just have been thankful I wasn’t up to my neck in water clinging to a tree for dear life.
That got me thinking about the whole premise behind “Evelyn’s Drawings Can’t Swim.” So we had a flood in Cedar Rapids two years ago and it gave me this idea for a story. In a way I thought that experience—of a child watching his downtown be swallowed up by flood waters—might only speak to people who knew and saw what happened here in my hometown. It took seeing those images on the news (that were eerily similar to what we saw here in Cedar Rapids) to make me realize that this story can speak to others and give them hope (at least that’s my hope.)
I continue to be amazed at the ways in which the world around me and the things happening in it every day influence how and what I write…and who can relate to or be touched by it.
The good news is yesterday the sun finally came out (and the kids and I went to pool…hooray!)
So too the sun will come out as I write.