Monday, May 28, 2012

Adventure Novels and Story Setting

If you’re familiar with my novels you know that I love my romance seasoned with a big dose of adventure and suspense. Setting can be a character in a novel and, in my opinion, is essential to an adventure story.

Often writers set all their stories in a specific region they love or at least with which they’re reasonably familiar.While I’m an experienced traveler and have first-hand knowledge of most of my settings, I also love to step away from the familiar in my stories, if possible. As a seventh generation Texan, I love Texas much like Scarlet O’Hara loved Tara, the family plantation, in Gone with the Wind. But with my adventurer’s heart, I love to experience new places, particularly a rocky coast or an old-growth wilderness forest or a snow-covered mountain. 

When I saw the phrase, "Oregon Outback," on the cover of a travel magazine, I knew that would make a perfect title for a novel and that I had to write a story set in Oregon’s high desert.That story eventually evolved into four novellas about four brothers who live in the region. An FBI agent. A cattle rancher. An adrenaline junkie. A bail bond recovery agent. All facing the elements of the Oregon Outback. All sacrificing for love.*

I’ve discovered that I don’t choose the setting. The setting chooses me. That might sound a little corny, but if you’re a writer, you understand what I mean. Just like Oregon's high desert drew my attention and wouldn’t let go, other settings are now vying for my attention to be included in an adventurous romantic suspense novel.
I'm not sure why I'm drawn to this type of story. Maybe it has everything to do with what I read growing up.
Below is a list of a few classic adventure novels. All of these were among my favorites . Which ones have you read?

The Call of the Wild by Jack London
Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss
King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard
The Lost World by Arthur Conan Doyle 

Where would you like to see an adventure story set?
*Want to read an excerpt from Oregon Outback? Please sign up to receive my newsletter. I’m getting ready to send that out and it will include the excerpt.

(Photo: untitled (Bill Herndon) / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That photo looks awfully familiar...!

(Kellie Coates Gilbert)