Now that Bits of String Too Small to Save is out–ebook, paperback, hardback, the works–I can and must concentrate on the sequel. Predictably, I began by taking ElizabethAnn through a portal to another world, this one by the sea, where tentacled sea monsters mess with peoples’ heads and hearts. Yet, I’m conscious to retain home as a theme
A Prequel as Key to the Theme of Home
I rather like the devastation the monsters have wrought, but I’m putting the breaks on this storyline for now. The responses I’m getting from a lot of people indicate they want to know more about No Oaks, how it became the futuristic dystopia and police state that it is in the beginning of Bits of String. (If you’re interested in dystopic fantasies, check out this blog here.)
Is No Oaks supposed to be America? Is it supposed to be Santa Fe in the future? Excellent questions, all. I think a novella is called for, here: a prequel to flesh out No Oaks and the Von Earp family, which ElizabethAnn leaves behind in the very first chapter of Bits of String. The prequel would highlight home as a theme in the book.
A Novel’s Theme and Why It’s Important
She thought she liked life in No Oaks, but after a while, and after she discovers her true nature, she has no desire to return. Though ElizabethAnn desperately seeks a “home,” her actual home holds no appeal for her.
That’s part of the story’s theme: how one can outgrow a home, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a new home appears before you. There can be a sense of no longer belonging where you came from, but still not knowing where you’re going, either. For me, part of using home as a theme means that the search for home is elusive because even as we search, the search changes us, and what we ultimately find may be something we’ve already outgrown.
Stay Tuned for More Dystopic Details
I think readers will enjoy finding out exactly how No Oaks, where most folks bathe with a vigorous rubbing of antiseptic gel, got to be that way, and how Grandma lived there for years as a secret rebel, just waiting for the right moment to escape back through the portals between space and time. Stay tuned!