It Started with an Octopus

Yesterday, for my birthday, John took me out to the China Buffet in Salem. As it was not a school day, the atmosphere was very pleasant, the food was fresh, and the company was especially nice as we were joined by two friends, Marge and Louis, whom I will name here because their paintings can be found at the Marblehead Art Association in Marblehead, Massachusetts.

At the sushi bar, John encountered a dish that wasn’t readily familiar. I noticed the tiny tentacled arms, however, and realized this was octopus. Read this book to find out why I can no longer eat Octopus. And that brings me to the story I started working on yesterday. (The first draft of the sheep story is finished)

There were two survival shows that I watched almost back to back. One was Dual Survival and the other was another survival show that I can’t remember the name of. In both cases, the survivors went out of their way to hunt and kill an octopus.

No judgments. In a survival situation, you do what you have to and those shows are about teaching people the skills to survive if they, heaven forbid, should find themselves in need of such skills. But it did make me squirm a bit, knowing that even before reading Sy Montgomery’s book, I knew that octopuses were intelligent, problem-solving creatures that could very likely become the next dominant species after humanity wipes itself out.

I also raised this other question after a survival show binge. Where are all the women survivalists? Why haven’t we had a Dual Survival episode with two women experts when we have seen a number of women who are beyond competent at the art of survival? (Feminists, help me out here, I want to see this happen)

So I wanted to write a story about a woman in a survival situation. I read Island of the Blue Dolphins way back in elementary school. I also read The Hunger Games, more recently. In both instances, the main characters grew up with those skill sets. So my character is not a ready made expert at survival but she has some rudimentary knowledge that saves her life. She also won’t be on the island for so long that the experts will grill me too much if it seems like I’ve gotten something wrong. I feel like the little bit of research I have done is adequate enough that it will save me on this.

Where does the octopus come in?

I just want to write a story where someone can’t bring themselves to kill an octopus. The octopus, in turn, will turn out to be a magical being that grants our heroine a few simple wishes that will enable her escape from the island.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s