Imagination is a wonderful thing. Creating new worlds and people beyond my realms of experience and watching them unfold on paper or a computer screen is something I love doing.
I don't want it all to be about 'reality'. I live in the real world every day. To me, fiction is about escapism.
Having said that, I do draw a line. I don't like plots to be TOO unrealistic. Think of the scene in Mission: Impossible where Tom Cruise's character goes flying along in the tunnel and manages to grab hold of the train. Or in Halloween H20 where the killer just won't die.
My own book could be best described as 'It hasn't happened yet...but it could'. Just because we haven't seen or experienced something in our own lives doesn't mean it can't happen. The Famous Five and the Tomorrow series are other examples....
I don't know any groups of clever children who have outwitted criminals.....but there could be.
Australia hasn't experienced a full-on invasion.....but we could.
Likewise, I don't know anyone like Hayley in my book....but there could be a real life Hayley out there somewhere.
As much as I love him, Duncan can be very annoying to watch movies with at times. He sits there scoffing and says, "That's so unrealistic. That couldn't happen." I tell him, "Ssssshhh!"
If you're a writer, let your imagination run wild. Have fun. There will always be people wanting to tear down your plot or characters because that's not how THEY'D behave in that situation (so, in their opinion, any character who doesn't think or act like they would is unrealistic). But it's YOUR story.
Imagine if you will.....