My Spirit Travels To The South West


Settings for stories are just as crucial as the plot. If the location doesn't match the tone of the story, it could lose the interest of the reader.

My towns are fictitional, but usually have a central description: small, tight knit communities at the base of a mountainous region.

The heritage that I come from is the exact opposite of my creations. The southern state of George is humid with a beautiful landscape, but not one mountain. The majority of my life, though, was spent in Oklahoma City, since my father was a member of the Air Force. My brief stint of three years in the Philipeans is just a flash of memory, so setting a story in that area would be difficult.


When we moved to Kansas, I eventually met my now husband. His mother is Spanish, his father "gringo." Michael was literally born between the mountains of Taos, New Mexico. When I made my first visit there, the tall mountains nestled my grandpa and grandma's home, near the Indian reservation. When we had the chance, we went up to Taos Ski Valley and I was hooked.

We travel there every year and spend some time either there or in Red River. The gentle winds through the trees, the cold mountain streams, and my favorite thing: the silence. It seems fitting to set a story in this type of place if I desire my characters to have limited access.

(Now, that being said, I also set my stories in Kansas, but I haven't quite developed the knack for it yet. I'm still researching the eastern part of the state and I plan to visit someday to gain a better picture in my mind)




I write what I know. I develop landscapes from where I have traveled and then create my make believe world, that has some truth to it.

Since I am not published, my experience is limited as of right now, but if I ever finish that manuscript and receive "the call" I'm sure my settings will change with each story.

The pictures I have posted are from Taos and the ski valley. If you ever get the chance to visit...

8 comments:

Reese Mobley said...

I didn't realize that so many of us wrote small town stuff. Guess we all long for the same sense of community in our lives and our novels. Great pix.

Joan Vincent said...

Thanks for sharing one of your favorite places, Tina. When I travel I sometimes take photos just of landscape for use in some future writing project. While photos don't ever measure up to the real think they are good memory prompts.

Penny Rader said...

Pretty pics, Tina. I hope to visit New Mexico one of these days. Since heat doesn't agree with me (or maybe it's me with it?), I'll have to find a them when it's less hot. :D

And I need to find out how you guys are able to scatter pictures throughout your posts. Whenever I try to add pics, they all crowd up at the top of the post, which I only have one pic per post.

Tina said...

Small towns are like comfort food, don't you think? I love the early mornings; so cool, quiet and the mist on the mountains just seem to float lazily around the peaks. Beautiful experience.

Penny: when you post pictures, put your cursed where you want the pix to fit and then when you click, "add picture" look at the bottom of the screen and select if you want it centered, etc.

Tina said...

I meant "curser".

Penny Rader said...

Actually, as many problems as I have with blogger, I think cursed is pretty apt. :D

Rox Delaney said...

Taos and the surrounding area sounds beautiful, Tina. No wonder you go back to visit every year!

Tina said...

Hey Rox...Taos is so beautiful and peaceful and serene....I would stay for months, if I could. It would be fanstasic to hold a writer's retreat in ski valley or Red River. We would never leave! Last October, we went to visit the grandparents and when we headed back home, we stopped in Red River. Sean Penn was there, filming some movie. They said he'd been very nice to the locals. I wonder which movie it was?