The thing I discovered about my grandparents and their grandparents and so on is this: one generation after the next had no hope of bettering their economic situation. They were in survival mode, most of them farming on a rocky hillside that they didn't even own to feed their own families. Some worked in the coal mines and one was a minister. There's a mix of Cherokee Indian in every branch of the tree.
Most of the boys up to my great-grandparents generation didn't attend school. They were listed on the census forms as farm laborers at the age of eleven and twelve. My son is eleven. I can't imagine him being done with school and pushing a plow as a full time job. I can't even get him to vacuum his room.
I have an idea of how I want to write the stories. I literally sketched it out while on vacation - a drawing of a mountain - the farther up the tiny houses are, the worse off the people's lives are.
I'm really excited to get this started, but it feels a lot like trying to make seven or eight different cakes out of one huge bucket of batter. Imagine a huge Hobart mixer with the beginnings of a whole lot of yummy treats in it. Each cake/story needs to be distinct and stand on its own, but coordinate with the rest. It's exciting and daunting at the same time.
I wrote everything on paper in a little journal including several random chapters. My handwriting is almost impossible to read. I'm feeling a little overwhelmed, but I need to dive in while it's still fresh in my mind.
I'll be back when I get this under control and finish those last three chapters of my WIP that I really wish I had written before vacation.
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