Dylan’s farm is imaginary. But it was inspired by a very real place: the farm my brother and sister-in-law own in Oregon.
The real place doesn’t have a big old house that needs renovation, and instead of a pond it has a creek. The real farm isn’t as isolated as the fictional one–there are a handful of neighbors nearby (none of whom are snarky, sexy handymen) and the property’s backed by a big wheat field instead of state forest.
But there are also similarities between the real and imaginary farms. Both have Christmas trees gone feral and abundant blackberries. Both are frequently visited by wildlife, although to the best of my knowledge, there are no werewolves on my relatives’ farm.
Above, that’s the creek. It’s pretty shallow in the summer but becomes a river during winter rains. During one visit an otter swam over to check us out.
Dylan’s farm doesn’t have big barn, just a sort of storage building. The real farm boasts a huge barn that was once used for drying hops. Nowadays bats roost under the roof.
Due to Dylan’s monthly proclivities, keeping livestock is not a good idea. On the real farm, my family keeps various birds. My daughter loves collecting the eggs, which are so much tastier than store-bought.
The duck eggs aren’t always easy to find. This duck made her nest in a blackberry bramble.
And there are slugs. I suspect that even on the real farm, some of them may be supernatural creatures. They are very large slugs.
Next inspiration post: The rodeo!
PS–I’ve posted another student bloopers video. Check it out! http://youtu.be/6ugjsSTK_38