The Difficulty About Lima Beans… and Story Detail

When I was a kid, I remember having lima beans once in a great while. When my own children were little, I’d buy the package of frozen mixed veggies with lima beans in them. The boys always pulled the lima beans to the sides of their plates, “saving” them for Mommy who loved them. Finding lima beans was like a treasure hunt just for me. With no one else eating them, I’ve never bought an entire bag of the beans.

So this week, I went out to harvest my first-ever full crop of lima beans. The deer ate down the first crop. I know I replanted a bunch, but only four plants continued on. From those four plants, I reaped a whopping twelve pods. Trying to remove the seeds within reminded me once more of a lima bean hunt. Those pods are hard to split! I don’t know if there’s a trick. I first used a serrated knife and cut the pods width-wise, hoping I would miss the precious seeds. I later squeezed the two edges together, making the pod split up the middle. That second method worked much, much better, by the way. Within each pod, I found only two to three seeds, but it’s enough for a home-grown lima serving. Yum. Can’t wait.

Recently, my husband and I watched a BBC mystery. From the very beginning, there was a concern about flies and sanitation. Throughout the plot, the flies and sanitation kept coming up. I knew there was some significance, and I was right. The flies actually tied everything together. Now I’m wondering about doing the same with lima beans. I’m not quite sure how the beans can become a major plot point, but the thought intrigues me.

So my writing challenge to you this week is this: Think of an inanimate object (not an ancient weapon or key; they’ve been claimed too often before) and weave your object throughout your tale.

Details. A good story is all about the details. (Well… a lot about them, anyway.) Happy writing.

One thought on “The Difficulty About Lima Beans… and Story Detail

  1. I’ll bet any picture book about how kids hate lima beens would be an instant hit with the kids – maybe not so much the parents.
    BTW – lima beans are completely gross…yuck! I agree with your kids LOL
    But I like the idea of using things from our past that remind us of instances and somehow integrating them into a plot point. Perhaps that’s what each of our characters need – these experiences (maybe borrowed – or shared if you will) from the writer in order to add another dimension to writing.
    Great read, Sandy

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