Monday, February 10, 2014

Thank You Kiefer Sutherland

Sometimes when you're working on a plot, there's a sticky place--a tar pit that you get mired in so you have to sit and stew about your plight for a bit before you can figure a way out. Occasionally the solution comes in a dream. A couple nights ago, Kiefer Sutherland appeared in my post-apocalyptic dream and gave me an insight on what happens next in Eaters: Resurrection (tentative title for the third book in the Eaters series). The dream had a similar setting to my story, but went off on a tangent.

I was a reluctant leader of several thousand refugees in the southern U.S. after a zombie apocalypse. Things were going from bad to worse, and someone suggested that we should consider going south of the border, because things weren't as dire in Mexico. I either volunteered to check out the situation down there or was voted to go. (Maybe I'd slipped that I knew a little Spanish?)

There was a long line at the border checkpoint. Many people ahead of me were wearing hoodies over their heads and dark sunglasses, an obvious attempt to thwart the facial recognition cameras at the front of the line. I threw my hoodie over my head and checked to make sure my document was in order. What were they so worried about? I'd heard it was easier to get over the border, but not so easy to get back into the U.S. once you crossed. When I finally reached the front of the line, I didn't even have to show my document--the border agent was so busy in a discussion with some other people that I simply walked on past them...into Mexico.

On the other side, I stepped into the midst of a sunny resort. There was a white sand beach, a swimming pool, lounge chairs, and people walking and laughing as they carried their drinks past me. one seemed worried over here. They were all partying and having a good time. Now...where to find the man? I spotted the building that I was looking for and made a bee line for it.

There was a window overlooking the resort in Kiefer Sutherland's office, but it was obvious that he rarely had a chance to enjoy the view, because was a very busy man. Stacks of papers covered his desk, and his phone rang nonstop. I waited patiently in the seat across from him thinking all the time: Dude, I just can't stop thinking of you as the vampire in The Lost Boys, and knowing that I would blow all credibility if those words slipped out of my mouth. When I finally had his attention, I told him that I had a large group that was interested in crossing over and joining his camp of survivors. "How many?" he asked. I wasn't really sure of an exact number. I suspected there were upwards of 20,000 in my group now, but I just told him, "A few thousand." His phone rang again. He ignored it and began shuffling papers on his desk. There were a few more questions between us and some awkward moments of silence. What he didn't say told me what I needed to know...

Now, this is not what is going to happen in Eaters III, but it did give me some inspiration. So, thanks Kiefer! I appreciate you stopping by my dream and helping out with a plot issue. Best of luck for continued success with 24: Live Another Day.