F is for Florida
Florida in all of its many flavors takes the cake for occupying my thoughts most of the time now. Don't worry, Southern Illinois, I'm not abandoning you when it comes to this blog or any other writing. It's only natural for a writer to focus and feed on what's front and center.
When we were just tourists here in years past, I never gave much thought to how much the landscape was being changed to accommodate our family and others like us who would visit the state or decided to stay. Swamps were drained. Native plants were supplanted by more appealing but often aggressively spreading ones. As new houses, hotels, restaurants, and other businesses were built, freshwater usage increased. More wells were drilled into aquifers that supply that fresh water. Hard surfaces like parking lots and driveways increased polluting runoff like lawn and agricultural chemicals into streams and other surficial water sources that feed those aquifers. More and more sinkholes appeared as fragile limestone support underground collapsed under the weight of all that consumption.
I've always admired writing that allows landscape to be uninhibited. From Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, to Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse, and then on to Barbara Kingsolver's Prodigal Summer, landscape becomes a prominent voice telling its own story. Imagine, if you will, characters who are not carrying the tale but are vehicles being driven by what surrounds them. Interestingly, that driving force moves not only the characters. It also approaches and attempts to scale manmade boundaries. Societal structures such as familial stability and moral values crumble.
|Cactus found along a St. George Island trail|
Things go awry when wilderness is hemmed in or otherwise "tampered" with. Nature takes over and tells the story. It's a powerful voice. Is it allowed to speak in any of your stories?
|St. George Island Lighthouse|
Please see A to Z Blogging Challenge for links to more "F's" from Challenge sponsors and other writers.