Thursday, October 17, 2013

Incorporating places I’ve visited into storylines

By Starla Kaye

I just returned from visiting the United Kingdom for ten days and I’m ready to go back. It isn’t that I don’t enjoy my home country of the United States, but there is something about the UK that draws me. Especially Scotland and the Highlands.

With the wonderful invention of digital cameras and cameras on smart phones, I take hundreds of pictures during my travels. I get rid of a lot of them, but still there are many that warm my heart as I look back at them. I particularly like visiting castle ruins and imagining what life would have been like when the castle was an actual stronghold. Many of the castles I have visited have breathtaking views of the countryside or the lochs they overlook. But during their heyday, it was critical to be able to see your enemy coming.

I enjoy touring every inch of the partial ruins, which isn’t all that easy. As I struggle to climb those tiny stone steps in the circular stairways to reach the various levels of the castle and the ramparts, I constantly wonder how people managed to hurry up those steps when it was necessary to do so. And going back down those staircases isn’t that much easier. No, life back then wouldn’t have been stress-free.

As I travel, I am constantly looking for places or things that will spark a story idea. The photo of The Clachan pub (the oldest pub in Scotland) is one possible setting currently floating around in my head. I just need characters and a plot to go with it. There are so many potential ideas.

When I wrote The CEO and the Cowboy, I also used places that I was familiar with. Daniel lives in the Country Club Plaza area of Kansas City, which I have been to many times. And Calhoun has a ranch in the Kansas Flint Hills, another area that I have driven through a lot. Personally, I like to incorporate places that I have visited into my stories so I have a better “feel” for the settings. That isn’t always possible, of course. 

The CEO and the Cowboy available HERE

Title: The CEO and the Cowboy
Genre: Contemporary, erotic, GLBT romance
Author Website: Starla Kaye


Teri Riggs said...

I lived in Joplin, Missouri for twenty years and made many weekend trips to KC. I love the town. How awesome are the Plaza lights at Christmas?

Starla Kaye said...

The Plaza lights are beautiful. We go there often to see them.

Alexa Bourne said...

LOL! This is why I started writing for the Honor Guard line. I wanted to incorporate my travels into my stories and bring a bit of the country to my readers. So far they've all been set in the UK for the exact same reasons you mentioned! Glad I'm not the only one who loves it there!

Anonymous said...

lovely photos Starla. I take a lot of snaps too