Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Seed of a Story by Andy Scheer

This past weekend I found another reference book for my work-in-progress. For nearly a year I've been deliberately adding to my collection of historical resources. But I didn't suspect how long I'd been collecting.

In my latest acquisition – a book about U.S. Army Aviation during the First World War – a photo of one aircraft reminded me how long this story has been percolating.

In September 1970, my father took me to the Bryan, Ohio, airport to see a De Havilland DH4 that was re-enacting the fiftieth anniversary of transcontinental airmail service. The next day the Bryan Times was filled with accounts of the town's place in aviation history. In a shoebox of old photos, I'm sure I still have black-and-white snapshots of that biplane.

That event was far from my conscious memory when I began crafting my novel. Somehow it just seemed right for my hero to be a pilot in the Upper Midwest, who in 1925 was flying a DH4 powered by a V-12 Liberty engine.

Maybe it's true what they say about writing what you know – even if at first you don't remember it.


Rick Barry said...

Some folks can write what they already know. Others research to the point of knowing what they didn't know,and from there can begin the writing. However you do it, I wish your 1925 airman well!

By the way, Mr. Lindbergh made his historic flight in 1927, just 2 years later. About 2 years ago I was browsing a dusty antique mall in Indiana and was surprised to find a yellowing photo of Charles and the Spirit of St. Louis hanging crookedly in a battered frame. For only $12 I brought it home and reframed it.

Diana said...

Andy, this is a reminder that all really good things take time to develop and stories are definitely best when they are well researched. The tortoise beats the hare every time. Well said Rick.