Photo Album - A World of Idea

            Besides writing, what I love best of all is travel.  Seeing the world – people and places far away, helps me to realize that I am a part of a much bigger story, that my neighbor is not only the person living next store to me, and also the family on the other side of the world.  Indirectly, travel informs my writing, as it changes my view of the world and my place in it.

  Egypt Autrailia
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            But some of my travel is undertaken deliberately for research purposes.  For example, my photos from Australia were taken on a camping expedition in the Outback – this to help me write about my heroine Lucy P. Simmons as she crosses the Outback in search of Aunt Pru.  There I got a sense of the landscape and climate, and the many challenges people face in this great frontier.  I also learned about the cameleers who originally brought explorers and adventurers across the region.  Today there are herds of wild camels roaming the Outback, descendants of these original beasts of burden. Though I didn’t realize it at the time, my experience riding a camel in Egypt taught me how Lucy would feel as she climbed aback her loyal Huma in Port Lincoln.

             Likewise, my travel to Ireland was intentionally planned to help in planning book 3 of the Lucy series.  On Clare Island, where only 140 people live year round, I learned about the famous Pirate Queen, Gracie O’Malley, visited her castle, and stood in the ancient church that houses the crypt in which she’s buried.  I traipsed across an area of strange and beautiful rock formations, called “The Burren” and explored one its many deep and beautiful caves.  Let this be a hint for readers eager to get their hands on Book 3 of the Lucy series!

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            During my trip to Spain I learned about the art of Flamenco Dance in the southern city of Jerez, and walked over 180,000 steps exploring the local penas where Flamenco music and dance is made, the nearby sherry bodegas, and neighboring Cadiz and Arcos de la Frontera – all of this to bring my young adult novel, tentatively titled “Gypsy” to life.

            I hope you enjoy these photos – and you never know how these experiences may influence future books – or how future books may inspire different trips around the world!