Forgotten Mansion – Lost Town
I am a complete sucker for a good story. Add to that the fact that I am like a child in a toy store when I’m in the middle of nature, and you’ll likely understand why my recent quad adventure with neighbors was so memorable.
It included a trek into the remote desert, picturesque views and a fascinating tale of a lost city.
As history notes (and my sore back can attest), rough terrain is the hallmark of the journey to Copper Creek. So when we finally reached our destination on switchback after switchback (on the comforts of a padded seat, mind you… not a wagon or saddle), I had already developed a deep appreciation for what I was about to see.
The stone turret, peeking out of the cottonwoods, didn’t disappoint. If anything, I was astonished at the resilience of the early townsfolk to have built and survived in this truly remote area. Not to mention, their mansion was three-stories and built to last. (Take a look at these wonderful vintage postcards that show just how harrowing the building process was. They also depict the infancy of the Copper Creek mining area, including the mansion and the mercantile, then intact).
For Writers: When I think about it, I see multiple parallels between the Sibley mansion and the novelist’s writing journey. These buildings, without the conveniences of modern technology, were built stone by stone. In much the same way, the writer starts with a foundation (plot), adding stone after stone, layer upon layer: character, setting, sensory elements, tension, dialogue. It’s a labor-intensive process, and sometimes it seems daunting, overwhelming.
But when I look at the territory these settlers had to cover – the hardships they had to endure – I think that it’s the least I can do, as a novelist, to follow my dream. The settlers’ dreams and determination literally crossed mountains, often resulting in death and hardship.
So, despite the tough road to publication, I think I owe it to myself to keep going. To show that same tenacity. To keep writing. And so do you. I don’t want my novels to become the forgotten mansion, the lost town, existing only in my memory.