The Idea: Away & Back

One of the most frequently asked questions writers get is “Where do your ideas come from?”

Sometimes they come from our pasts, or from newspaper articles, sometimes they come from our dreams, or an overheard conversation in a waiting room gets us thinking.  Sometimes we have absolutely no idea where they came from.

With Away & Back it was just a little pond by our house and some winter visitors.

On Miller's Pond

Miller’s Pond is less than a mile up the road from our house in Teton Valley, Idaho.  It’s a beautiful little spot bordering an organic dairy pasture with big fat Geurnsey’s named after the characters in Scooby Doo.  We drove past Miller’s Pond on the way to town and back on a regular basis.  We immediately noticed the strange flappy, spinning rectangles dangling from the power lines that ran alongside the pond, but we had no idea what they were.

Then one cold, sunny morning in January we passed the pond to find over 30 Trumpeter Swans and cygnets.


Saving Swans with Away & Back

Most of our work is for sheer entertainment and I’m totally cool with that.  I personally seek entertainment every single day.  But occasionally, our work gets to serve a greater purpose.  We get to inform or call attention, through fictional narrative, to something important.   Away & Back was a project like that.


This Saturday we’re showing Away & Back at our local high school auditorium as a free screening for our community to raise awareness and fundraise for the Swan Safe Power Line Project.  If we can raise enough money before the snow flies we can bury the power lines (just like Frankie’s Dad did in the Away & Back!) along a 1 mile stretch of land where a dozen swans were electrocuted last year.