New Beginnings

Yesterday I bundled up in long johns, sweaters, heavy socks and all the rest of the cold weather gear and headed out on lake Simcoe for some last-minute ice fishing. Originally a test run for my new portable ice hut, but by the time we got out there, there wasn’t enough time to do more than drill the holes and drop our lines.

Looking like Ralphie’s little brother Randy in A Christmas Story aside, there is something humbling about being mere specks on the frozen lake. Kinda like the first word on a blank page. The buzz of snowmobiles gets quickly lost with that first tug on your line.

Blue sky above you and a layer of ice separating you from the mysterious dark waters under your feet. If it wasn’t for those pesky snowmobiles, it would be easy to imagine yourself back before the days of monstrous cottages and ostentatious boats. Back when catching the perch meant you would eat tonight. 

I needed that. We caught the monster… ok, we caught bait, minnows, but it’s not always about catching the fish. As long as they are biting, that’s all I need. That and the wordless camaraderie of my fishing posse. It doesn’t matter who catches the fish as long as one of us does.

 Back home, empty-handed but happy, I found that the characters of Appetites paced impatiently in my head. I guess the cold cleared enough room in there for them to mill about like minnows in the pail. And while I didn’t get anything written last night, a good nights sleep and a hot shower this morning, I picked up where I left off last night. Energized, encouraged and most of all inspired.

“How does Peter meet Lou?” “Why exactly does silver affect werewolves?” “What about this name for Peter’s first victim?” and a whole conversation between Peter’s daughter and Officer Reynolds, clamoured in my head.

So this morning has been spent on research. On examining the various repercussions of different actions or interactions.

Oh, and planing my next foray onto Ouentironk. Maybe next time we’ll catch enough for a good fish fry. Happy bellies also inspire but maybe that’s just me.


About Dale Long

Writing ambushed me from the shadows. At first I pushed it aside as nonsense, but luckily my wife and two girls saw the potential. Since then I have had an article published by Metroland, placed as runner-up and in the top ten in humour writing contests and various other contests. The icing on the cake was placing as runner-up in the WCDR's Wicked Words contest (130 entries) and having my entry published in the contests anthology of the same name. My entry was an exerpt from my upcoming novel, Echoes.
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6 Responses to New Beginnings

  1. Deepam Wadds says:

    There you go! Hurray. Nothing like an expanse of frozen white to clear the head and bring you in.
    Let’s keep those keys clacking, hey?

  2. Lisa says:

    Me, I prefer to get my inspiration by enjoying the winter scenery through my living room window sipping a hot toddy, but hey, whatever works!

  3. Nothing like a “wordless camaraderie of my fishing posse” (love that!) to allow your brain to spin and weave words. I agree with Lisa, I tend to prefer the warmth of home, but I do get an good opportunity to plan scenes and create dialogue in my head while I freeze my butt off walking the dog!

    • Dale Long says:

      I think what happens is you distract part of your brain with the motions of walking, watching the dog, remembering where you’re going, and it frees up room for the creative part to run amuk. I get the best ideas driving.

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