Deciding Where to Vacation

            Some of us are influenced by the countless brochures that flood our mailboxes. We turn pages, and then, a yearned-for trip appears! Perhaps we’d never thought of a cruise around the Cape, but the pictures look awesome.

            We also take advice from friends and family. If someone brags about a trip to Nepal, we might investigate and then go. Or not.

            And then there are those of us who look at a map of the world, drop a finger on a spot, and then that’s where we’ll go.

            Your task is to write a story in which your protagonist decides to go on a vacation. She might investigate using a variety of methods, but the old-let’s-spin-the-globe and see where it lands might make for an interesting story.

            She would have to research the best time to go, the expected weather, things to do and see and accommodations, including travel.

            To make it more interesting, she invites someone to come along. This could be a parent, best friend or casual acquaintance. Maybe she finds a class being offered on the area, meets a group that’s going, and joins them.

            Make something unexpected happen so that there’s drama. If could be a sudden downpour that wipes out the main road, a romance that goes wrong, a heated discussion of where to go and how did we not find the way.

            Have fun with this one.

Vacation Woes

We make the best plans. We coordinate departure dates and times so that someone can get us to the airport. We do the same for when we arrive.

We select the best rental car from the provider that we like, and depend on them to have the vehicle ready when we are.

Our hotel choices vary from location to location. Many of us rely on specific brands, or avoid specific brands, or choose neighborhoods we know are safe. Maybe we select a B & B in an old Victorian home, or now, with AirBNB rent someone’s house, condo or cottage.

Our characters must approach travel with some degree of finesse. Unless, of course, they are novices or nonchalant.

What happens when things go wrong? The flight is cancelled or seriously delayed? There is no rental car waiting, no hotel, no B & B, no safe neighborhood. Think of the stories to be told!

Your task is to write a scene in which your character goes on a trip. In order to make the story interesting, there must be tension, so things have to go wrong. It might be too much to create problems with every part of the plan, so be careful. Enough problems to provide interest, but not too many as that will pull the readers out of the story.

Have fun with this one.

Coming Home

Your character has been away from home. Hopefully the trip has gone well. No fights with family. Interesting things to see and done. Good food shared. Nieces and nephews played with and hugged. A wonderful time.

All vacations come to an end and the travelers must return home. What emotions go through them at this time? Do they sense impending loneliness and so don’t want to leave? Is a loved one ill and they fear they this individual might die?

Or do they yearn for the solitude of their own home? I believe that most people love going home, whether that home is a deluxe mansion or a tidy studio apartment. It is theirs, filled with their things, a space that is special to them, no matter how poor.

It is time to bring your character home. As they pack and say final goodbyes, what goes through her mind? We want to know for it tells us quite a bit about the character’s relationship to significant others in her life. But don’t tell us, show us in her tears and words.

As he travels home, whether by plane, train or car, what goes through his mind? Is he missing his dog/cat? Is he dreading going back to work? Is he already missing the places he has gone and the people he has seen?

This is a hard one not to just share with us. You could use phone conversations or texts, but for the most part, for this part of the scene, we will have to be in the character’s head.

Your task is to bring the visit to a close and put your character on the road. Also include the arrival home and the emotions that she feels. What are the first things she does when she arrives? We want to experience this with your character.

Have fun with this one.