Saturday, November 16, 2019

What is #Adventure

“What is adventure? If a lone wolf lifts his plaintive call into the moonlight near your campsite, you might call that adventure. While you’re sweating like a horse on a climb over a 12,000 foot pass, that could be adventure. When howling head winds press your lips against your teeth, you face a mighty struggle. When your pack grows heavy on your shoulders as your climb a 14,000 foot peak, you feel the adventure. When you suffer freezing temperatures and 20 inches of fresh powder on a hut to hut trip in the Rockies, that could be called adventure. But that’s not what makes an adventure. It’s your willingness to conquer it, and to present yourself at the doorstep of nature. That creates the experience. No more greater joy can come from life than to live inside a moment of adventure. It is the uncommon wilderness experience that gives your life expectation.” 
Frosty Wooldridge

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Reality in Fiction - Horses


As I mentioned in a blog post awhile back, readers are often curious about how much from my life shows up in my novels. Probably the book I most enjoyed writing is Big Horn Storm. I grew up in rural Wyoming and life in those early years revolved around horses. We rodeoed, rode nearly every night in the summer, and my dad’s idea of a family vacation was a pack trip into the wilderness. I’m sure I didn’t appreciate it at the time, but looking back, we had some great adventures. Fast forward to 2012 when I published Big Horn Storm. There are a number of crazy horseback escape scenes that I couldn’t have written without those childhood experiences and the time spent in the Big Horn Mountains. One in particular involved helping neighbors move cattle to their grazing lease. They were farmers, not ranchers, so my dad and I were nearly the only experienced horseback riders in the group. We were nearing the end of a long trek, but had to push the herd up one last steep dirt road in order to leave them at the watering hole. Halfway up the slope the tired cows decided it would be easier to veer off the road and slide down the loose-soil slope back to the bottom than to press on. My dad was on a green-broke colt who was also getting tired so he told me to go after the errant cattle. I thought he was crazy, but edged my strong palomino gelding to the edge and gave him a gentle tap to gauge his response. Being the dedicated cow horse he was, he leapt. I beat the cows to the bottom, rounded them up, and pushed them back to the road, but still have a few flashbacks. I’m sure it wasn’t as terrifying as I remember, but if you’re curious as to how my youthful mind interpreted the short event, check out chapter nine of Big Horn Storm


Friday, November 8, 2019

National Park Final #Free Entrance Day for 2019


Sunday, November 10, 2019 is the last entrance-fee-free-day in 2019 for our National Parks in honor of Veteran's Day. Many of the western resource parks may be closed or have limited services this late in the year, so if you’re heading to one of these, check with park before heading out. Otherwise, get out and enjoy a nearby park for free. For more information visit  https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/fee-free-parks.htm

Monday, November 4, 2019

Reality in #Fiction - #Mexico

People often ask how much of the content in my adventure novels is based on real life. Well, it depends on the story. There is very little in Shrouded in Secrets that resembles places I’ve been or things I’ve done, so it required a lot of research. The story is a totally over-the-top action-adventure romantic thriller that takes readers on a high-stakes race around the globe to stop a group of deadly terrorists searching for thirteen mythical relics capable of epic destruction. It was by far my most complex book to write, and involved a cork board, note cards, photos, maps, timelines, and lots of pushpins. Almost all of my other stories contain settings from places I’ve been and/or embellished adventures I’ve experienced and I’ll share a few of those from time to time.
When I caught the international travel bug decades ago, I spent quite a bit of time in Mexico and occasionally ventured into Belize. I was, and still am, fascinated with Mayan ruins and never pass up an opportunity to visit these amazing archeological sites. I have visited Tulum, Cobá, Chichén Itzá, and Ek Balam in Mexico and several in Belize. Each site is unique and special in many ways and two have found their way into my stories. In Marked in Mexico a burnt-out lawyer, who happens to be the daughter of a powerful U.S. Senator, an ex-army Ranger, a couple of college students, and an obnoxious businessman are kidnapped at the Sacred Well while visiting Chichén Itzá. The Sacred Well is a large cenote about 65 yards in diameter, which is set-off from the rest of the ruins. Legend has it that the well was used for human sacrifice, which is quite believable as the skeletons of about 50 people have been found in the well. What better place for the action to explode in an adventure-suspense novel. Thankfully, my adventures in the jungles of Mexico have been much less eventful than Jessica and Jack’s, and I hope their story will entertain and endear readers.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

#November Days to Remember

Here’s what’s coming up in November.

November 1 – All Saints Day
November 1-2 – Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
November 3 – Daylight Savings time ends (fall back an hour)
November 5 – General Election Day in the United States
November 11 – Veteran’s Day
November 13 – Caregiver Appreciation and Sadie Hawkins Day
November 20 – Universal Children’s Day
November 21 – Great American Smokeout
November 28 – Thanksgiving Day
November 29 – Black Friday