Sunday, April 1, 2007

Red sandstone cliffs . . .


Red sandstone cliffs tower seven hundred feet above me. The sky is so blue it doesn’t seem real. Pictures cannot portray the beauty all around me.

Where am I? Not at my computer desk in my basement. I’m on vacation in Zion National Park in southern Utah. It’s an amazing place and I love it. I’ve been here before, but this trip I’m taking my three friends from San Francisco, Cary, Glenn and Lily. I met them while on tour in Greece a few months ago. We’re heading to Bryce National Park tomorrow and then to the Grand Canyon. We’ll be on the road for eight days total traveling across Utah and Arizona.

Zion is great. The red canyon walls inspired me in my first novel. The characters go to a place called Red Canyon, and it is of course based on Zion. Being here brings up memories of the book and I think about what I could add to the text to make it more vibrant. Then I think—no—just leave it alone.

The book is pretty much done and I’m waiting for my editor to get it back to me, which should be any time now. The publisher’s deadline is June 1, 2007. My deadline to get the book to the editor was January 1, 2007. So I’ve been waiting for over three months—which is normal.

Publishing moves slow, so you have time to do your research and get things done the way you want them. Search for your inspiration wherever you can. One of the places I find mine is in nature. Places I visit get my creative energies flowing. Seeing pictures in National Geographic Magazine or in other places is also a great source of inspiration—but pictures just don’t do most things justice. Research is important for fiction. Do yours however you can, but putting your feet on the ground in a scenic place is a great way to breathe life into your settings.

Now go hiking somewhere cool—and then write about it.

Author of The Golden Cord
Book One of the Iron Dragon Series

1 comment:

Patrick M. Tracy said...


Glad you're having a good time down in Zion. I always like going through there. I used to cut through Zion on the way home from Vegas, even in the middle of the winter when it was sort of a crapshoot whether it would be iced over.

I agree with you. The sun never shines in your office cubicle or in your corner study. You have to get outside and get some dirt on your hands sometimes. It reminds you that there are real things with taste and tactile sense and smell--that there's something a lot more "high def" than your cable TV.

Be well, bro.