Karen Russell, whose novel and collection of short stories continues to fascinate me, has a gift for finding the magical in the places she writes about. Her short story collection is chock full of locales that began as someplace fairly ordinary and evolved into someplace well beyond extra-ordinary.
Lately, I've set myself the challenge of finding the magical, the exotic, the eerie, the disturbing in the places I write about. A backyard. A city park. A creek in Virginia. An old house. A playground. The issue isn't whether I have traveled to exotic places, or chosen characters in some far-off place. The issue is whether I can unveil the remarkable in the world around me, look beneath the surface, put on a new pair of lenses and see the world around me the way a writer should.