I created the One Year Adventure Novel with two goals in mind.
First, I wanted to pass on what I’ve learned about writing in simple and easy-to-understand lessons that bring the elements of story to beginning writers without all the politically correct garbage that so often accompanies writing programs at community colleges and universities. Frankly, I’m irritated by the traditional model of “becoming” an artist through education that focuses not on art, but on propaganda and conformity.
Second, I wanted to help plant the seeds of restoration. A few years ago I was signing books at a homeschool convention when I had a minor epiphany. After talking to a young kid who read and understood G.K. Chesterton, I looked out at the swarming families loaded down with classic novels and 50-pound bags of organic flour, and I realized the potential for a new America was brooding over the surface of the convention hall. For the first time I saw that “Joel’s army” (Joel 2), which I have always pictured in sack cloth and ashes, was more likely to be interested in Lego robots and Latin.
Don’t get me wrong. This has nothing to do with intelligence. Homeschool kids aren’t inherently smarter. And I’m not saying the future belongs exclusively to homeschoolers. But I do believe homeschooling is a model for those who will change the world, if indeed it will be changed. It’s not just that homeschoolers think outside the box. They live outside the box.
It will take a great army of radicals who aren’t brainwashed into materialism, sexual addiction and political correctness—but who nonetheless understand and sympathize with their peers—to provide the impetus for change.
The culture must change from within, through the moral courage of those who haven’t been destroyed by it. My hope lies in a generation of young storytellers equipped to reconnect Truth to Story. I believe the homeschool generation (including publicly educated kids who live outside the box) has been raised up “for such a time as this.” After all, they have the character, the discipline, and the moral compass the world needs. They already have the message. What they need is the means to present it.
Thus the One Year Adventure Novel. By learning how to shape the basic elements of every story, students learn to tell modern parables, to infuse stories with meaning and, I hope, to recapture the hearts of their generation with truth.