Saturday, September 7, 2019

Writing will take you places by Jan Scarbrough #RomanceGems


“One of the best things about being a writer is that writing will take you places you perhaps never expected to go.” How to Write a Damn Good Mystery by James N. Frey

This is so true!

When I wanted to write a romance set on a dude ranch in Montana, my first stop was the Internet. I had once visited Yellowstone National Park, so I found a dude ranch north of the park in Paradise Valley. I used this ranch as my setting with a fictitious name, of course. During a recent summer vacation, I had a chance to see the real Paradise Valley and visit a real Montana dude ranch. My imagination wasn’t that far off, but it was fun seeing it in person.

Earlier in my career, I wanted to write a cowboy hero. As usual, I didn’t have any experience. But I could research. Enter my fascination with the Professional Bull Riders, the PBR. I attended an actual event in Louisville and drove to Nashville for another. I watched PBR events on TV and read about them in books. This is how Judd Romeo in Kentucky Cowboy and Brody in the Montana McKenna’s series came to be.

I’ve stuck close to home for many of my books. There’s not a better place for horse lovers than the Bluegrass of Kentucky. My research here has taken me to thoroughbred horse farms and racetracks. I’ve attended the World’s Championship Horse Show at the Kentucky State Fair and imagined riding and winning on Saturday night.

Once a psychic told me I couldn’t write about a psychic because I wasn’t one. What?! Then how do mystery writers write about murderers or historical novelists write about the past?

Physical places are not the only place writers don’t expect to go. I have written about mediums and animal communicators. Through books and my imagination, I traveled to 1283 England to write My Lord Raven.

When I was starting out, I simply wanted to write a romance novel. It had been my dream for years, and I finally told myself it was time to make that dream come true. It’s been a long haul. I’ve traveled to many places that I never expected to see. However, the journey isn’t over. That next book begs to be written. The next adventure waits to be uncovered.

What about you? If you’re a writer, where has your writing taken you? If you’re a reader, where have you traveled through books?


Comment below. I’ll pick one comment at random (not one of our Romance Gems authors) and send the winner an e-book copy of Brody. I’ll randomly draw on Monday, Sept. 9, and announce the winner here and on the Romance Gems FB Group. Then we will need to communicate, so you can receive the gift.




Don't forget to enter our September Rafflecopter Giveaway – Back to School ... Back to You!
The prizes are listed on our GIVEAWAY TAB above, along with the entry form. You can also click HERE to go straight to the entry form!



11 comments:

  1. My first book took place in Miami, even though I had never been. Google was my best friend! Recently when we went on our 6 month road trip, I made sure to visit Miami. I was pleasantly surprised to see that my book was fairly accurate. I could see my characters walking along the Miami Beach strip.

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  2. I think I've been everyplace I've written about, but research is just a special gift writers get for doing their job, isn't it?

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  3. Hm...I’ve researched brothels from the early 1900s. How to hook a car to a tow truck...how to conduct a police interview...and more. Life’s nothing if not interesting.

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  4. I've learned so much through reading and writing. And I would have to say that I have learned more by reading romances than with any other genre.

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  5. Yes. I do live vicariously through my characters.

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  6. I keep my books small town New England, with the exception of a future release, which is set in Florida... in a small town, lol!

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  7. I have been almost everywhere through books, including places that probably don't exist! I've had a very good time and learned so much. -Karen H near Tampa - kesh307 at yahoo dot com

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    1. Karen H. You were the only one to post, so you win a copy of Brody!

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  8. Enjoyed your post very much, Jan. "Going places" is one reason readers love books. We time travel, visit other planets, and hop all over the world in books.

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  9. I just received the email telling me about my free book and I downloaded it. This is so great!! Thank you all so much! Karen H near Tampa - kesh307 at yahoo dot com

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    1. Karen H. So glad you got the book. I hope you enjoy it!

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