Truth is Stranger than Fiction – or – Mining Your Days for Story

Where do ideas come from? Life, baby, life!

After an amazing week with family who live 3000 miles away from my home. There for the marriage of my beautiful niece, there was enough grist for future stories of all kinds. Sometimes you need to push reality a bit to create fiction, sometimes you have to pull it back.

  • Night before leaving, my flight was cancelled. I had to rebook to a full flight where I was wedged between two large football players in shorts, tank tops, and body hair. Ewwww!
  • Being cheap, I agreed to an online deal of low cost and the carrier picks the car. I was expecting a Ford Focus, or a Leaf, maybe a Smart Car. I got a convertible Mustang GT that growled like a lion, not a horse. SWEET!  But…. stop and go traffic for three hours (which should have been an hour), 30-degree weather which made putting the top down chilly (I did it anyway).
  • Family stuff which was rich with content and seeing my sister’s new house for the first time.
  • Waking up at 6 am to discover chaos as the wedding officiate and bridesmaid were both sick. My future niece-in-law stepped into the bridesmaid role and yours truly officiated the wedding. 😊
  • That afternoon, we troop to the winery where the wedding was being held and slip into the groom’s room, where a glass of $300 scotch was offered. Very, very smooth. The groomsmen had been drinking all day (you can see where this is heading).
  • Set up, figuring out the order of service, planning what I would say, and hanging lights…
  • An amazing service with just the right amount of humor and seriousness. They opted for private vows at the license signing for just the wedding party. Good choice, the bridesmaids were bawling and the groomsmen were drunk.
See the source image
Not this bad, really!
  • Followed by more drinking and appetizers (great crab cakes!).
  • Then a wonderful dinner, gelato instead of cake (oh my GOSH are we programmed for cake… I’ve been jonesing for cake ever since). And more drinking.
  • A beautiful toast by my other amazing niece, followed by a drunken toast by the best man.
  • Dancing. Very uncomfortable, drunken dancing (I can’t dance, not won’t, can’t, it’s a pain thing), but some women were not happy with that at all.
  • A car decorated with phrases and graphics that would make this blog X-rated…
  • As designated driver, I drove someone’s van home despite her assurance she could drive in that drunken condition and did it all the time. She gave up her keys willingly.
  • Driving a van with floor branches that crowded the cargo bay tickling my ears and the back of my neck.
  • The next day was wine tasting (4 good wines, 12 bad ones, in my opinion).
  • Then a blast of fish bake meal.
  • Some more family stuff the next day, and then I was flying out again. It was 9:05 am flight that I had to leave at 5:00 am to make.
  • Another full flight, this time sitting with a sweet pastor and his wife on the way to a church convention.
  • When I get home, it’s to a sick dog who we found out the next day has diabetes, so we’ll be saying goodbye to my sweet puppy (and the away kids are driving down as I write to say their goodbyes).

That was just a short week and there’s enough material there (and more I didn’t write above) to fuel realism in several future stories, perhaps in different settings, different events, different locations, but the seeds were found here.

Now, you may be the type who writes such things down so you have them when you’re ready to write. That’s fine. I prefer my memories to sink into the subconscious where they can percolate and eventually worm their way into my work. Either method works, but with mine, fictionalization is virtually guaranteed.

Mine your days, observe, analyze, and allow to steep. Your life is more like a story than you know.

One thought on “Truth is Stranger than Fiction – or – Mining Your Days for Story”

  1. Oh my gosh! That sounds amazing. It makes me want to scrap my current project and write one surrounding a wedding weekend. Or maybe I can find two people in my story who really need to marry each other. Yes, that’s the better choice. I love everything about this post, including the picture of the wedding cake. As for you officiating, you’re a natural to do that.


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