masondixonWhat separates the south from the north? Nope, it ain’t the Mason-Dixon. It’s the road signs.

New Jersey’s exit signs remind us that the road we’re on is not the road we want. Ads for dating websites wilt on the medians. The giant green gecko stares down at our cars, telling us to save on insurance. There’s not much personality there.

But South Carolina? There’s treasures along the roadside. And I’m not talking about boiled peanuts. 

Reading the signs along a rural route, I was reminded of how small, specific details in your writing–like a street name or a slogan on a church billboard–can contribute loads to the mood and setting of your story. 

Here’s the southern road signs that charmed me.

DAN
THE
MAN’S
Tractor Service
814-DIRT

Christians Like Pianos
Need Frequent Tuning

Minnows Crickets
Worms Sodas

Bee City
Honey Farm
Petting Zoo

Pumpkin Girl Road
Heavy Father Lane

There’s Only One Heaven
and Only One Way
to Get There

Groceries & Hunt’n Stuff

Welding
Organic Produce

Today’s Sons
are Tomorrow’s Fathers

Mars Oldfield Road

Vincent’s Venison
Processing Plant

There are stories buried in these signs.

Do you pet bees at Bee City?

Was Pumpkin Girl related to Heavy Father?

Is the welder married to the organic farmer? Or are they the same person?

Did aliens once land on Mars Oldfield Road?

What stories do your town’s signs tell?