Along with Hollywood, my next book, The Scandal, is also set in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. I lived in Colorado in the late 1990s, and it truly is a beautiful state.
Sometimes I wish I hadn’t left. However, circumstances were such at the time that I had no choice. Must be why I’ve used Colorado as a location in so many of my novels. It’s a way for me to go back and visit one of the most beautiful and scenic states in the country.
Like Telluride and Durango, Steamboat Springs is an old ranching and mining town that’s now a popular tourist destination. It’s a few hours’ drive from Denver and Colorado Springs. This makes it the perfect literary location as it’s easy for my characters to travel back and forth from those bigger cities to Steamboat Springs. It also has a cool sounding name.
Living in Arizona means I’m fortunate enough to be able visit Colorado, and a few years ago I took a trip there that included Steamboat Springs. Since that time I’ve acquired much better camera equipment, and I’ve learned how to shoot and edit video. I hope to return to Steamboat Springs sometime soon, for now I’ll end this post with a video I shot of southwestern Colorado, (under a different name.) It features Ouray, another beautiful mountain town that looks a little like Steamboat Springs.
When I’m not busy writing books I enjoy photography and traveling. I got my first camera when I was nine, and I loved photography ever since. And now, with new digital technology, I’m now getting into video. I learned a lot from my good friend, Rob Resetar, who created my amazing book trailers.
Did you know that there are some wonderful wineries in southern Arizona? I didn’t know about them until after I moved to Tucson. They’re located near the Mexican border in a beautiful part of the state. From time to time I’ll pack a lunch and spend a day there. I also used this part of Arizona as a locations in my novel, The Betrayal.
Here is a video montage I produced about our local wine country. You can see why it became the inspiration for McPherson Vineyards, the fictitious winery in The Betrayal.
The new year has a way of making people feel nostalgic. I guess I’m no exception. The high point of my 2014 was a road trip I took to Steamboat Springs, Colorado, in July.
I passed through Steamboat Springs for the first time back in the 1990s. Famous for its ski resort, ranching is still a part of the area. So, when I wrote The Reunion, I decided to set the fictitious St. Eligius Ranch about twenty miles away from the town. It’s a former cattle ranch turned horse sanctuary It’s also the home of Laura Palmer, ex-wife of leading man Ian Palmer. A number of key scenes in the novel take place at St. Eligius Ranch, including the story’s final climax. Later on, when I wrote The Journey, I also set a number of scenes at St. Eligius Ranch.
Photography, like writing, is one of my life’s passions. So I photographed scenery that closely matched some of the descriptions of St. Eligius Ranch. It was a wonderful trip. One I’ll remember fondly for many years to come. I also hope to revisit it someday. In the meantime, please enjoy this scene from The Reunion, as Gillian, the leading lady, visits St. Eligius for the first time.
Happy New Year
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Before long the horses were saddled and they mounted up. Will stayed behind, explaining he had work to do. Laura rode a young buckskin gelding she called Fred.”He’s Miss Mollie’s son,” she explained. “He was a young foal at her side when we adopted them two years ago. I think he’ll turn out to be a fine horse, but he still has some rough edges to work out.”