My favorite setting for a book

Pat Davids here.
My favorite place to write about is a place very dear to my heart. I know you think I’m going to talk about the setting for my Amish series, but I’m not.

No, much as I like Hope Springs, Ohio, I’m a Kansas gal at heart and I love, love, love the Flint Hills.

I love the wind-swept treeless expanses of rolling hills covered with prairie grass for as far as the eye can see.

I love them in the spring when the great fires turn the night orange with their glow.

I love them in the fall when the grass turns amber and gold like the fire lives inside of it.

I love them in the winter when the snow-covered hills look like gigantic loaves dusted with powdered sugar.

The Flint Hills look the same today as when covered wagons first rolled across them. Oh, the buffalo and pronghorn antelope are pretty much gone, but the bluestem grass that fed millions of them now fattens thousands and thousands of steers who will make their way to your kitchen table and BBQ grill in the coming year. Some of those cattle belong to my dad and brothers.

My current release, Balancing Act, takes place outside the town of Council Grove, Kansas. A real town with heavy ties to the old west. It's the story of a New York dance with a shameful past and a single dad rancher with twin daughters and a cat named Bonkers.

Cowboys are as common as pickup trucks in Council Grove.
Some of those fellows are cute enough to make a romance authors heart go pitty-pat.

By the way, the guy in this photo is my brother. He’s a true cowboy and he loves the Flint Hills even more than I do.

I hope to one day set more stories in my beloved hills, but truth be told, I’d rather visit them than write about them. There is this one beautiful, spring-fed creek lined with trees where the bass bite like there is no tomorrow.

I know we’ll be discussing our favorite places to set books this month, but where is the one place you’d love to go visit and why?


Melissa Robbins said...

Such pretty pictures, Pat. I love the look of golden wheat. I'm an east coast girl, so the plains fascinate me.

Pat Davids said...

I lived on the east coast for two years in Groton, CT. I have a dear friend who lives in Maine. It is beautiful there. I love the ocean. The only place I would live besides Kansas would be the coast of Maine. Except, not in the winter.

Rox Delaney said...

Gorgeous pictures! I love the Flint Hills, although I'm more familiar with southern part. I spent a few weekends with my bff in the Sedan area and did some college in Pittsburg.

Pat, the coast of Oregon is similar to Maine's coast. Rocky and rugged. And the chance of snow there is small. ;) That's my choice.

Joan Vincent said...

Pat, I too love the Flint Hills in all seasons. One spring a couple of years ago we took a wildflower tour of the hills which was marvelous for actually being on the land and surrounded by all that prairie.
I'd love to explore the Yorkshire downs In northern England. From photos its similar to the Flint Hills in vastness.

Reese Mobley said...

You can take the girl out of the Flint Hills, but you can't take the Flint Hills out of the girl. ;-)

Pat Davids said...

I like the Sedan area, too. Dave and I bow hunted there for a number of years. Only time I've ever lost in the woods was one dark night outside Sedan. You know the old phrase "too dark to see your hand in front of your face" that was exactly how dark it was.

Pat Davids said...

I've heard of the Yorkshire Downs. I can just see you gazing over the Downs looking for inspiration for your wonderful historical novels. Fun. I hope you get the chance to go there one day.

Pat Davids said...

Is that why my ample frame has so many bumps and humps? Never thought of that before.

Reese Mobley said...


Anonymous said...

I loved the pictures! You have me missing the drive from here to Wichita and seeing those lovely Flint Hills. Haven't traveled much myself, so I want to see it all! I'd love to some day jump in the car and drive from one side of the USA to the other. I've been to Colorado and seen the mountains, and would love to see them again some day. My heart is and always will belong to Kansas though.

Penny Rader said...

Great pics, Pat. Is that same brother who spoke to our group a while back?

I'd love to visit Maine and Oregon and Vermont and New York. And Montana and Wyoming and Washington and New Mexico and Tennessee and ....

Penny Rader said...

Great pics, Pat. Is that same brother who spoke to our group a while back?

I'd love to visit Maine and Oregon and Vermont and New York. And Montana and Wyoming and Washington and New Mexico and Tennessee and ....

Nina Sipes said...

Ah, Pat,
You've captured the plains too and why I love western Kansas.
One of the reasons I go with a friend to Mexican food on Fridays in Walsh, Colorado,(fifteen miles and closest town) is because it brings the cowboys in.

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