Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Best Places to Fall in Love

Hi, everyone! I'm Teri Wilson, a brand new Craftie Lady. Alaskan Hearts, my first book for Love Inspired, was released in June this year and the follow-up, Alaskan Hero will hit the shelves in May 2013. I suspect you've already spotted the connection...both books are set in Alaska, one of my favorite places on earth.

I wrote Alaskan Hearts after my first trip to Alaska a little over two years ago. Alaska is like no place I've ever been before and I was very inspired by the time I spent there. The snow, the was magical. Once, when I thought I heard someone's cell phone vibrating in church, it turned out to be a moose call! Someone pointed to the window and I turned to see a moose peeking in the church window during the worship service. I also learned how to mush a team of sled dogs while I was there, something I'd obviously never done in my hometown in south Texas.

Full moon over Alaska, March 2012
I took this photo while standing on a frozen lake,
awaiting a ski plane full of dogs 

To me, settings are crucial for writing romance. There's a fantastical quality to a story set in a place that's unique. Readers feel as though they've been on an exciting vacation, perhaps just like the characters in your book. I also think it lends a sense of legitimacy to the romance of the hero and heroine. How can your heroine not fall in love when she's holding hands with a handsome stranger and watching the Northern Lights dancing over their heads?

As I write this blog post, I'm sitting in a hotel room in Napa Valley, California. I'm here with friends for a 3-day weekend. Yesterday we went on a 20-mile bicycling tour through the wine country. (Take a moment to think about that. 20 miles. On a bike. Yes, I'm sitting on a pillow right now.) Not only had I never seen the wine country before, but I'd also never, ever ridden a "real" bicycle with gears and hand brakes. What can I say? I'm a very girly girl. My bike at home is baby blue and pink, and it has foot brakes.

Me (on the left), with my friend April, standing in a vineyard,
getting ready to hop on our bicycles.
Don't let the smile fool you. I was terrified.

Despite the fact that I kept forgetting how to stop and I was worried I would crash into the person in front of me, I had a great time. The vineyards we visited were breathtakingly beautiful. We ate warm grapes, fresh off the vine and saw a jack rabbit darting through a field of sunflowers. I'm pretty sure I've found a perfect setting for a new romance. What do you think?


  1. Teri, we are so glad to have you join the Craftie Ladies. Welcome.

  2. The Alaska series sounds wonderful. It's on my "wish list" of places to visit. I think a writer can find romance just about anywhere for their characters. One of my WIP's takes place in Utah in the canyon areas and yet another spends a lot of time at the mall.

  3. Oh, I want to go to Alaska too! As for biking twenty miles, hmmm. I bike often, has a recumbant bike, so my questions would be, "How bad were the hills?"
    Your series sounds awesome.
    We're so glad to have you here.

  4. Teri, welcome! Glad you're here. Can't wait to read the books. I've never been to Alaska, but would sure like to go. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Thank you for the warm welcome, everyone! My body is home in Texas, but my head is in Alaska because yesterday I started working on the third Alaska book. Yay!

  6. HI TERI~
    I enjoyed so much at RWA getting to know you. And am so glad we are near each other here in TEXAS. We will have to do something...maybe not ride 20 miles on a bike though. lol I do that in my office while I'm editing.

    Settings are sooo important. I can't wait to go to Alaska. I did a continuity a couple of years ago Alaska Brides for LI and it was fun however I had to do my research on the computer and watching Alaska set movies.

    SO glad you are here.

  7. Welcome Teri! What gorgeous pictures. I'm impressed with your adventures and love the humor in your storytelling. I would be sitting on a pillow too!

  8. Teri,
    So fun meeting you at RWA this summer! I often think of your adorable pink dress with all the ruffles!!! Loved it!

    You are amazing. Taking on Alaska and a 20 mile bike ride. Oh my gosh!

    I adore Napa. Sonoma, too. Beautiful country that I usually enjoy by car and not by bike. :)

    Looking forward to your next release! Congrats on your success. So glad you're part of the Craftie Ladies.


  9. Hi Teri, I'm still a newby here at Craftie Ladies too :) So glad to see you here. Would love to visit Alaska someday! Think I'll start by reading your books :)

  10. Welcome, Teri. Glad to have you here. Will you get to go to ACFW conference in Dallas?

  11. Welcome Teri! Those Alaskan pictures were beautiful. The wine country ones, too. I agree, settings are very important. Since I grew up near the Smoky Mountains, it was an obvious choice to set my first series. I think too that when you love a place it shines through in your writing. Great post!

  12. What amazing photos, Teri!! I feel as if I've been on a trip! :)

    I especially loved the one of the mountains!

    We're so glad you joined us!

  13. Great to have you here Terri, and those pictures are fabulous! Traveling to Alaska is one of those things on my bucket list. Hopefully I'll get to put a check mark by it sometime soon!

  14. Nice to meet you, Teri!

    Have you ever seen Keanu Reeves' movie Walk in the Clouds? 1945 in Napa Valley. EXCELLENT romance!

  15. Thank you again, everyone! I'm so glad I was able to meet so many LI authors in Anaheim. I already can't wait for Atlanta!

    Debby, I almost wore that pink dress last weekend when I went out for a nice dinner with my family to celebrate my new HQN contract. I wanted to dress up really fancy, but we were going out for Italian and fear of errant spaghetti sauce convinced me to wear red tulle instead. It was clearly the right choice because as soon as we got to the restaurant, a gentleman at the bar said to me, "Now that's a dress!" I'm fairly certain he was pushing 90. But hey, I'll take the compliment. ;)

  16. Cute story about the red dress, Teri!

  17. Welcome, Teri!I love reading Alaska stories, and can't wait to get my hands on yours. My magical place is the Adirondack Mountains. The first time I visited God gave me three story ideas that never let go. I'm taking the first one through critique groups now. No matter what happens with it, my heart is with those mountains!