Research in Jackson Hole
I spent last week in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where I attended a writer’s conference and took advantage of the opportunity to do research for the next book in my King’s Brat series, SURRENDER. I also hiked in Grand Teton National Forest, where there were numerous bright yellow “bear warning” signs. I ended up humming “The Farmer in the Dell” all the way to Phelps Lake, just so the grizzlies would know I was there. You really wouldn’t want to meet a bear like this all alone on the trail!
At the Jackson Hole Fire Station, I asked Battalion Chief Fire Marshall Kathy Clay a myriad of questions about firefighters and firefighting in Jackson Hole, information I need to make Brian Flynn realistic as a JH firefighter. Kathy then pointed me toward former smoke jumper Lesley Williams-Gomez who, along with former smoke jumper Chip Gerdin, provided suggestions and anecdotes about jumping from a plane to fight a blazing fire in the forest below that will keep SURRENDER both accurate and thrilling.
Photo Credit: Chip Gerdin
Kathy (Wyoming’s first female battalion chief fire marshal) and her husband Mike invit
ed me to their home for a delicious dinner that included elk steak, homemade bread, and cherry pie made with locally
picked and pitted cherries. Of course I asked them where they met and fell in love (I do this wherever I go). They met working together as outfitters, Kathy cooking and Mike as a guide, work he continues to this day with hunters. Mike also serves as a volunteer firefighter.
I’ll be speaking at the national Romance Writers of America conference at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina on Friday, July 15 from 12:45-1:45 on “Writing Conflict that will Keep readers Turning the Pages” by putting your characters in terrible trouble—and keeping them there. I’ll also be signing FREE books at the Penguin Random House signing at the conference at 9:00 on Saturday morning, July 16. See you there!
I’m still looking for suggestions for two-word titles for SURRENDER. If I choose your title, you’ll receive an autographed copy of the book when it comes out—with an acknowledgement in the book of your contribution of the title. So keep those suggestions coming to me through my website Contact page. If you’ve already sent me a suggestion through my Facebook page, please send it again to my website so I can include you in this contest.