Books · creative writing · Writing

My Inspiration for Writing Guatemala Adventures

I wrote this one with my friend Katie Coe during a mission trip to Guatemala. The inspiration for this one is probably obvious because I used my personal experiences from being in Guatemala and the eye opening things that happened. The characters are purely fictional or mostly, we did leave some real people in to make the story easier to write.

The girl, Sabeleine, did not want to be in Guatemala on this mission trip with her church but she sees someone working in the fields and her mind gets changed. We decided to go with a pretty simple minded girl probably because we don’t know what it’s like. I know that my mind is not easily changed once I decide that I don’t want to do something or go somewhere, even if there’s a cute guy.

The boy, Geofferey, is an American too but his family chose to move to Guatemala and they are actually moving back about a week after the church mission group arrives. I don’t think there was any real reason that we made him a cute guy working in the field, maybe to set it up like a romance (it’s definitely not).

They see each other again but a tragedy occurs and Sabeleine ends up in the hospital with a voice in her head. At first it gives her headaches but it always tells her the plan and the reason why she belongs in Guatemala. He talks her through everything she does there, from speaking Spanish to the young children to building the shed on top of the hospital right next to the crazy woman.

Now, obviously this would be a weird psychological story if it weren’t for the whole mission trip thing so we gave Geofferey a full name and then killed him off right at the beginning. His name is Geofferey Owen Dallaway. Katie and I thought this would be clever instead of just giving it away right away, just let people read it a few times and if they don’t get it maybe it just wasn’t meant to be understood.

This was the first religious story I had written and it was definitely fun to gather all of my experiences and write them into a story. Maybe someday I’ll dig it back out and try to complete it and share some chapters.

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