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Jodi Flake

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    I'm a retired music teacher and have written and produced 7 musicals. I love to write stories and have written a couple of novels now, and look forward to the Conference to learn more about this wonderful craft of story making.

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  1. Algonkian Writer Conference 7 Assignments 6 2021.docx #1 The Act of Story Statement In the Arizona Desert, about 2070, fourteen-year-old Michael Anderson struggles against the forces of Nature, including a two-year deluge of unprecedented precipitation which causes four dams to burst on the Salt River above the Phoenix metropolis. Due to the natural disaster, Michael’s family is evacuated and alone he must keep his family alive as they hike forty-nine miles in a savage wilderness through a blizzard in the White Mountains of Arizona. He has no greater desire than to see his entire family safely reunited. His father, Lieutenant Joseph Anderson of the New China Security Force is required to stay behind, fortunately now to help with the withdrawal effort, rather than the scheduled battle against the New China Military to remove all the Salt River Pima Tribe from their reservation. Both Michael and Joseph Anderson confront moral issues to either obey New China orders or risk firing squads and prison camps for choosing to save American lives under the Communist China regime, presently in control for the past two decades in the United States. #2 Antagonist Much like the colonists of the first American Revolution, Michael must choose loyalties; to comply with the life-sucking regulations mandated by the New China Emperors, (King George) or rebel against the dictatorial government and jeopardize his, his friends and his families’ lives and forge into a war of Independence. (The Regulars) Michael is an ordinary middle-grade student who faces school bullies, family conflict, and fear of the unknown. In this End Time saga, the antagonist is the natural disaster, The Desert Tsunami, titled by the media, merged with overwhelming New China directives forced upon the Anderson family. Their chances of survival and reuniting seem impossible after the dams fail and the Phoenix Valley is washed away until it is unrecognizable. #3 Title My first title was, “No Fear for Those Prepared” but that’s boring, too long and not descriptive enough for a YA End Times novel. I thought of “72 Hours” because survivalists preach that if you can endure the first seventy-two hours after a natural disaster, then you will likely come out on top. This is the first book in my CATACLYSM series, so to fit the story boards for the next books, I added a few twists and turns, and augmented a couple of characters to support those future plots. I realized that two major evacuations take place in this first story; 1 a forced evacuation (human-made) by the New China Military of all the Native Americans from their reservation in the entire US, and an evacuation because of a natural disaster. “Evacuation: The Desert Deluge” or “Evacuation: Natural & Human-Made” or “Natural & Human-Made Disaster”. One of these titles may work. According to biblical prophecies the end times will be filled with an unparalleled number of natural disasters; earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis, drought, tornadoes, famine, disease, pandemics, wildfires, hailstorms, blizzards and such. The first story contains the natural disaster element, with an uprising by common Americans, like Michael, to take back their country from the Chinese. #4 Comparables My YA futuristic end times adventure is somewhat comparable to Chris Stewart’s “The Great and Terrible”. Comparable in that the plot is of a modern-time family caught in catastrophic events, politically made, combined with natural disasters and their fight for survival. The Anderson family pray occasionally, but the novel “Evacuation” is not nearly as religiously oriented to end time prophecies as Stewart’s series or “Thunder of Heaven” written by Tim LaHaye and Craig Parshall, which have many “Come to Jesus” moments and filled with scriptural accounts from Ezekiel, Daniel and Revelations. Many novels and movies have been created about the end of the Earth and end times, most with thorough religious overtones. An opposite spectrum of end time writing is “The End Time Saga” by Daniel Green where an apocalyptic global pandemic creates man-eating zombies that destroy most human life on Planet Earth. There’s an extreme amount of descriptive gore, blood and violence throughout each page of the novel. There’s no mention of prophecies or biblical scriptures, just a natural end to most human life due to Monkey Pox. The unique character of “Evacuation”, my novel, is that a middle-grade student, Michael narrates the events, without knowing he’s wrapped up in prophetic end time scenarios but uncovers new insights about the future due to the recently discovered “Book of Enoch” copied and given to him at great sacrifice by his best friend. #5 Core Wound and Primary Conflict/Hook Line Will Michael keep his family alive as they trek through the snowy blizzard of the New China Mountains of Arizona? His younger brother, Jericho will likely die in the snowy wilderness from the attack of the government-enhanced wolves and his father has gone missing and Michael feels powerless to save either. Will his family survive the deluge and the New China dictates which have forced their family to separate and compelled them into life-threatening peril? Primary Conflict though, becomes surviving the desert deluge when the tsunami-size wave plunges through the Phoenix Valley, forcing Michael and his family to climb through the White Mountains in the dead of winter to their planned rendezvous spot, and hopefully reunite with his father, Lieutenant Joseph Anderson. #6 Other Matters of Conflict Michael’s anger grows toward the New China Government which threatens his father to face a firing squad and to throw his entire family into an eternal prison camp, for protecting the Salt River Pima Tribe from the NC Military removal. Michael shuns the idea of joining with the Sons and Daughters of Liberty to fight against the New China government for American Independence. His cousin, Carter challenges him to find the courage to sign up and battle his inner fears of failure and his core belief of not being enough. It’s rumored at Queen Creek Junior High that Brady the Brute has plans to annihilate Michael for daring to snowboard with Bonnie all day. For some strange reason, Bonnie has chosen Michael to be her knight in shining armor and Michael is frustrated with the new assignment and relationship, being naive to crushes and the aspects of communicating with girls. #7 Setting The Anderson family’s home is in Queen Creek, Arizona and the neighborhoods in the East Valley are where the events take place during the first part of the novel, as well as the East Valley Police Stations where Michael’s dad works. The setting is different from today, though due to the Chinese take-over, with Work Camps and Prison Camps scattered through the Phoenix Valley neighborhoods. Also, new technology, like hover cars, 3-D images on the screen and TV are viewed, scientific advances and new music genres are evident in the year 2070. Once the Anderson’s are evacuated and begin hiking up the Salt River Canyon in deep snow, the setting changes drastically. Because of the recent severe ice and snowstorms, most Arizona highways have been closed and food and gasoline rations plague the Phoenix Valley. The Anderson’s van runs out of fuel once they cross the Salt River Bridge at the bottom of the Salt River Canyon. Seven members of the Anderson family find themselves on foot in a snow-drifted wilderness, 49 miles from their rendezvous location in Pinedale, Arizona.
  2. I learn so many versatile methods and concepts at each Writing Conference I attend.  Looking forward to NYC in June!

     

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