Coming soon to a bookstore near you is the one and only Hambone Fisher, age 5. Hambone is my child-like alter ego. He emerged at McAlister’s Deli during its Christmas coloring contest last year. I wanted to enter, but the store discriminated against adults. Thus Hambone Fisher was born. He’s sort of taken a life of his own.
Hambone colored a beautiful picture but unfortunately did not win the contest. However, he didn’t let that get him down. Instead he colored an assortment of pictures for random people to hone his skills. That led to him entering a coloring contest this week sponsored by the Lake City Reporter. He was actually a contender for that one (until someone revealed his origins). That’s OK. He’ll just find another contest to enter. Eventually Hambone is going to win.
I plan on keeping Hambone around for awhile, mainly to turn him into a children’s book series: “The Misadventures of Hambone Fisher, Age 5.” Easier said than done. Clearly some character development is required for Hambone to make this a legitimate project. So far I know Hambone is a precocious, talkative 5-year-old. He likes to color, is very imaginative (sometimes he exaggerates) and can be strong-willed at times.
No his real name isn’t Hambone. It’s Henry James Fisher, but he is southern bred and born. Everyone goes by a nickname in these parts. His family consists of his older brother, Pork Chop Fisher, and his parents, Mommie and Daddy (real names coming for them later). His misadventures will include everything from coloring contests capers to dealing with a crush on an older woman (the babysitter). Each misadventure will have an important lesson to learn. But I have to finish crafting the character before I start writing story plots.
Working on Hambone made me realize it requires a lot of thought to create a fictional character. I can write a news article with no problems. Fiction writing, on the other hand, is quite challenging. It’s all from my imagination instead of just the facts. No matter what, I will make Hambone happen. Right now his series is a work in process, but he’s always available to supply anyone with a picture.