Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Facts of Life

By Darvell Hunt

Interesting facts make wonderful details for interesting stories. So what if you can’t think of any useful facts to add to your current story? Probe your own life and see what you find. Examine your weirdness. The facts from your own life just might add the needed detail to your stories.

At one point in the past, I have been tagged by a fellow blogger to write five things that most people likely do not know about me. Here are the first five that came to my head (and which may end up, or have already ended up, in my stories):

1. The doctor who delivered me was killed in a plane crash before my parents had fully paid their medical bill. As such, the bill for my birth has never been completely paid.

2. I first got on the Internet in 1986, long before most people knew what it was or even what email was. I first got on the World Wide Web in 1993. The World Wide Web was a graphical interface layered on top of the text-based Internet and was a strange, new thing to me at the time. At this point I had not even heard of a man named Al Gore.

3. I am ambidextrous. I can do most things with either hand. For some things I prefer the right hand, for other things I prefer the left hand. I believe I am one of the few people who reverse the mouse buttons on a computer because I use my left hand for the mouse, but am familiar with using it with the right hand. Strangely, from what I’ve seen, most left-handed people do not swap the buttons.

4. I suffer from a from of epilepsy called “Simple Partial Seizures.” During one of these episodes, I am in complete control of myself and people watching me usually have no indication that something is going on, except that I may seem a bit irritable. My sense of touch and hearing is exaggerated and my sense of time is sped up. I’ve never been on drugs, but I’ve imagined that a drug trip may be similar to this. For some reason—probably just a coincidence—the main character of my novel, The Kumina Man, also suffers from this condition.

5. I grew up on my dad’s share of the original homesteaded farm of my great-great-grandfather, who received the land from the homestead lottery in 1906. The land was stolen from the Ute Indian Reservation at the time, as more land was needed for settling homesteaders. My great-great-grandmother died across the street from where I grew up, having been gored by a bull.

Hmm, I think I see some ideas forming for an upcoming story coming from these “facts of life.”

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