Years ago, I seriously considered whether “The Story” would take place on a farm. Although I have only had one opportunity since then to go to a real farm, which ended up consisting of staying in the farmhouse and having no farm tour, does Farming Simulator 2019 suffice as simulacrumous substitution? Not in the ways I would want. It is more about the mechanics than say Harvest Moon, but between those, will there still be farming?
Spoilers?: None (considering fictional worldbuilding)
I’m not so sure.
There are some aspects of the farming scenario that seem to fit into the world of “The Story” well, but as I learned from writing my first novel, if I don’t know the location well enough, then I can’t write to it. In order to write fiction well, I have to get inside the characters and their worlds, which is not possible when I have hindrances physical or mental preventing that focus.
Over the years, I’ve done my best to clear out some of those distractions.
As I continue to work toward that, I realize that I should consider a weekly series on “The Story” as a sort of reminder to myself to write about these characters, and so this is the first in that series. I haven’t put much effort into writing any fiction over the past few months not just because of current events but because I’ve wanted to focus on downsizing my space.
A clearer physical space can give a clearer mental space.
But I shouldn’t neglect my long-term goals in service of these short-term goals. I’ve lucked into a situation that can afford me time – whether to write like I am now, read, or even let my mind rest from its overworked sensibilities – so I should use it to the best of my ability. Will it last for a few more days? Past this essay’s publication? If I am responsible, it can last longer.
How will Trishna and John’s story factor into this?
I had always planned to have a war in the background of “The Story,” distant although it may be for them. I’m not yet sure if it will be inspired on current events because I don’t want to inject my experiences into their experiences, per se, because these are fictional characters in their own world. Having transplants like myself or others show up in their world would be fun for pop-culture winks, but it does ruin part of the believably for their overall narrative.
I still have some months or years before I write their story formally.
Until then, I’ll write about Trishna’s sister Sammohini, and how she handles the events in “The Story,” because that will be a more flexible way to interpret their story. Sammohini’s story can change without it directly impacting Trishna’s, for example, but as I build the framework for my future novels featuring Sammohini, that will solidify information as well. I’m not sure how exactly I will best plan and scope out this work, since much of it is following my imagination’s interpretation of these stories, but I’ll need to practice a balancing act between fiction-writing and life-living.
My biggest hurdle right now is myself.
I have too many lingering attachments to too many items that aren’t making me feel great. As I look around my apartment-mansion, I see many items that won’t inspire me in my writing, life-living, relaxation, or in those regards, but it’s been difficult for me to part ways with them because of how minuscule of a percentage of attachment I have for them. I have a National Geographic magazine to my left that I’ll never want to read through, yet it’s there because I thought of donating it, and it ended up there, rather than in my donation pile.
Things like that stack up and distract me from fiction planning or writing.
Even now, I’ve been distracted from the notion of whether the Lanchester Farm, as I had written about previously, will ever come into fruition. Short-answer: Unsure. Long-answer: Depends on how often Trishna’s childhood home pops up into mind and how that ties into her story with John. The main scenes that play out in my mind start with Trishna and John, so not much of her early childhood, so her background living conditions – other than being affluent enough for her to be comfortable – aren’t as big of a priority for me.
Still, I don’t know how much of a farmgirl she would be…
While I liked the hard-working notion, when I got into Sammohini’s perspective for my first novel, she was steeped in the city mindset. She didn’t have much of a non-technical mindset to her, so I don’t know if I could see her raising farm animals or crops. I haven’t found much inspiration other than farming videogames, either, to point me in that direction. They may just live humdrum lives in the suburbs of Eville. That, too, isn’t clear, because then what would her parents do for a living? Some aspects of their parents seem fairly easy for me to read into, but otherwise, it’s foggy.
I’ll clear up that fog as I clear up my physical and mental space.
This essay will be a good start. Asking this question, even though I meandered around its answer, helped me see that I don’t need to dedicate a serious amount of time at this point for worldbuilding. I can casually explore their world throughout my week and consider notions when I might otherwise consider whether or not I want to keep something. If we chip away at large blocks of things, whether ideas like a farming backdrop or the distractions we have in life, we can get closer to where we actually want to go in life. If we let ourselves be distracted by silly fancies, then we’ll forever wonder whether we could have actually achieved our goals, rather than continually trying.
Even if I don’t write “The Story,” I am now closer than I was when I started this essay.
|Sources: The Story’s Imaginarium.|
|Inspirations: Getting a free copy of Farming Simulator 2019, as part of a weekly promo thing, and playing the game for about one hour. When I first played it, within five minutes I knew the game wouldn’t be helpful for me, since it was more technical than personable. I booted back into it to give it another chance and then just went about exploring its world like it were a FPS. It’s weirdly dystopian. No one interacts with you other than looking at you, you can only enter your own house, but, I’m not playing the game as intended, I suppose.|
|Related: Essays building “The Story.”|
|Screenshots: Other screenshots:         |
|Written On: 2020 March 28 [From midnight to “and how she handles the events in “The Story,” to 12:15am, then from 12:31 to 12:48am. Notepad.]|
|Last Edited: 2020 March 28 [First draft; final draft for the Internet.]|