Monday, February 28, 2011

Ratoncito’s Last Tooth- Mike Hill

Ratoncito's Last Tooth began, like many kernels of a story, by two distinct ideas or experiences intersecting at once. In this case, I had just gone through an episode with my dentist involving a Ratoncitos Last Tooth - smallx tooth extraction which, although not especially traumatic left me weak for the rest of the day. This began the idea but I needed character and setting and felt that a humble beginning was right. I had just been reading about the poverty and conditions of the barrios near the large cosmopolitan areas of South America and had also heard about El Camino del Muerte in Bolivia. Thus a setting was ready and the character came and whispered in my ear, his life story. The crucible that caused the story to be written was Orson Scott Card's Literary Boot Camp 2007 which I can only liken to a communal barn-raising; a group of people come together, prepared and willing to work under the practiced hand of the master, and accomplish in a few days what might take an individual months or years to realize.

In this story in particular I felt that brevity was needed and chose every word that moved it along; if it didn't ultimately contribute, I chose to cut or omit. And credit where credit is due; my father is also a published writer, my younger brother in his short life was the critical mirror for my imagination and my wife and best friend who urged, encouraged and supported me; thank you. Now onto the next project...

--Mike Hill

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