One bonus of being published by World Weaver Press is getting know some of the other authors in their stable. Imagine my surprise when the Publisher introduced me to Rebecca Roland: who moved to Portland and is currently living the writer’s life I was supposed to have (just kidding) in the various quirky coffee shops there. So we exchanged blog posts. Here’s her in celebration of the last book in her Shards of History trilogy (especially since the first one is 99 cents now), which I am going to start soon (I just finished her Graveyard Girl Urban Fantasy and enjoyed all the luscious New Mexico food descriptions). Here she is:

Shattered Fates, the third and last book in my Shards of History trilogy, is an epic fantasy story that mostly takes place in a world that looks a lot like the American Southwest, unlike much of the medieval European fantasy out there. While much of it has that feel, the waterfall that features in all three books was inspired by another place–namely, Multnomah Falls in Oregon.

I took a trip to Multnomah Falls about a decade ago, shortly after attending the Odyssey Writing Workshop and while I was working on the rough draft of the first book in the series. The falls–and really, the entire Columbia River Gorge–are breathtaking. The falls are over 600 feet tall, and I could imagine it nestled within high cliffs surrounding the valley where the Taakwa lived, protected by the gargoyle-like Jeguduns. I could imagine the humanoid, winged Jeguduns flying lazily around Multnomah Falls, or diving after one another in a game of catch.

From the base of the falls, a trail takes you up to Benson Bridge, which is about 70 feet up. The trail cuts back and forth beneath towering pine, spruce, and fir. It’s cool in the shade, and peaceful, even with all of the other visitors tramping along the trail with you. The falling water provides a constant, gentle roar. If I could shoo other people away and set up a hammock under the trees and listen to the waterfall while napping, I would be in heaven. I thought the peacefulness of Tuvin’s Falls in my story would make a nice juxtaposition for the dragon attack that opens Shattered Fates.

Some places stick with you so much that you end up writing them into books. Or, in my case, you end up writing them into books and moving to the area. I lived in the American Southwest when I wrote the Shards series. And now, I live in the Pacific Northwest, which served as more inspiration for the series. Life imitates fiction, which imitates life. I feel like, with the release of this book and my recent move, I’ve come full circle.