Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lists; One Ingredient Can Change Everything

I’m one of those crazy people that when they start a project, whether it be a story or let’s say a backyard barbecue, a list is made. My husband use to make quirky remarks about my jumbled notes scratched out on paper. He learned real quickly how important the lists are when he took off camping without me and didn’t have a spatula to flip his burgers.

Once I’ve decided who the main character is going to be, I give them their age. For me this sets the backbone for the whole story. Like when making the punch for your barbecue, are you going to make one the teenagers can drink or is it going to be for adults only? Sometimes you can add a little bit of fizz (you know, like that certain kind of tension teen’s like between characters that leaves them wanting more) for the young adults by mixing in a carbonated drink. But, if you’re entertaining for the more mature crowd that added adult kick might be just what you need. Simply changing one ingredient can alter the whole recipe.

After the choice of age, my lists have lists. What are the steps to get the outcome? The experience with relationships, if it’s a first love then everything is new. Then what happened to make the person who they are. That is cataloged for me to know how to develop the character and 90% of it never makes it in the story.

These lists are what help you make sure everything is ready to begin, stay on track, and provide an ending result that is pleasing to your audience.

With all this talk of beverages, I am sharing a punch that is family friendly but can be easily adapted for over 21.

Photo courtesy of Shannon Swainston

1 can frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 can frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
½ cup grenadine syrup, chilled (optional)
1 bottle (32oz) ginger ale (or Sprite/7up) chilled

Prepare concentrates as directed on cans. Mix lemonade orange juice and syrup in large punch bowl; stir in ginger ale.

*If you’re going for the adult version, exchange the ginger ale with champagne.

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