Just a Scrap? No, It's Much More Than That

My sister found a nice piece of denim to patch a hole in these oh-so-old-but-oh-so-soft jeans and I was delighted. I know jeans filled with holes are all the rage these days – news flash: that was trendy decades ago, too, kids – but I didn’t like how the hole in these well-worn jeans kept getting bigger as time passed.

The farm kid in me knew the day would come when the hole was TOO big to repair and I didn’t want to convert these jeans into shorts.

That patch speaks to me on another level, too: as a metaphor for life. That scrap, that fragment, still had value and found new purpose by rescuing a pair of jeans --- just as many people society views as “discards” can add so much to our world.

Scraps have value for writers, too. When I wrote the first draft of FALLEN TREES, it was more than 160,000 words – far too long for a first-time writer, so I focused on the core storyline and trimmed what didn’t feed it. But I didn’t just send the trimmings into the ether of cyberspace. I held onto scenes and secondary story elements because you never know what they might inspire down the road.

One of those secondary elements turned into a key component of the sequel to FALLEN TREES, which I wrote during the pandemic. It’s still just a first draft and needs work, but beta readers have enjoyed it and tell me it’s even better than TREES. That made me smile. I hope to one day release the print and audiobook version of the sequel together.

I’ll think of the sequel every time I see this patch, too.