One day I happened to come across a small listing advertising a Sherlock Holmes exhibit at the University of Minnesota where I work. Being a fan of the detective stories, I decided I would go to the exhibit at lunch. It was just a short walk over the bridge to the Elmer L Anderson Library– a place I had never ventured into before.
And why would I? There was nothing interesting on the outside. It was just an ordinary brown brick building.
But I soon learned that the library is home to the world’s largest collection of Sherlock Holmes related material. The exhibit was only a tiny selection of 60,000 collected items that included books, journals, and letters; scrapbooks, audio and visual recordings, and pop culture artifacts like his deer stalker hat, curved pipe and magnifying glass.
How many years have I been at the University of Minnesota and I did not know this? I left feeling inspired and excited.
It was a happy reminder to keep exploring those unknown corners of my world and that magical places are closer than I think and behind ordinary doors. New adventures like these will certainly open up new writing ideas for me. But I’ll never find them if I don’t keep looking.
Think about the unknown places right in your own neighborhood. Walk a different path, explore a new building, restaurant or park. Go on your own adventure.
To quote Holmes, “Come Watson, come. The game is afoot.”