Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Confession #251: I Am Not a Camper

I love doing outdoor things. Horseback riding, hiking, ATVing, target shooting, SCUBA diving, cross-country skiing… I’m up for pretty much any outdoor activity. When I’m done, however, when I’m sweaty and wind-burned and hungry and tired and a tiny bit cranky, I don’t want to have to pee in the woods. Plus, I really hate ticks. Like, loathe them. What I do want is a soft bed and indoor plumbing, and I don’t care if that makes me a princess. Plop that tiara down on my head, because I will claim that crown. Just don’t make me camp.

This caused a conundrum for me when I was writing Gone Too Deep, the third book in the Search and Rescue series (out on August 2nd). Not only do the characters have to camp in the mountains for several days, but they have to do it in the snow. For most of this series, I threw myself into the research wholeheartedly (and sometimes quite literally, such as when I jumped into a frozen reservoir during cold-water rescue training, similar to what Lou experienced in Hold Your Breath…except minus the dead body). Fan the Flames taught me about guns and Doomsday Prepper-dom and firefighting and safe rooms. But camping? I just couldn’t work up the enthusiasm.

It had to be done, though. Instead of leaping in the camping research with both feet, like with all my other books, I stomped, muttering the entire time. I must admit, though, that I cheated a little, pulling from my friends’ account of their two years in a tepee while building their mountain home (the one where I eventually lived), and the winters I spent in an attic apartment that was so cold I’d wear a stocking hat to bed, and other, more professional people's opinions on what was the best winter-camping gear, so I could minimize my actual, real-life, do-it-myself, winter-camping research.

George and Ellie’s story is done, and I survived it, un-frostbitten and tick-free (thank goodness). As you read it, I hope you appreciate my sacrifice. All tents have been given to camping-loving friends, and my tiara is firmly back in place. After my next outdoor adventure, you'll find me at a nearby hotel, thoroughly enjoying a hot shower.

Out August 2nd, 2016

In the remote Rocky Mountains, lives depend on the Search & Rescue brotherhood. But in a place this far off the map, trust is hard to come by and secrets can be murder…

George Holloway has spent his life alone, exploring the treacherous beauty of the Colorado Rockies. He’s the best survival expert Search and Rescue has, which makes him the obvious choice to lead Ellie Price through deadly terrain to find her missing father. There’s just one problem—Ellie’s everything George isn’t. She’s a city girl, charming, gregarious, delicate, small. And when she looks up at him with those big, dark eyes, he swears he would tear the world apart to keep her safe.

With a killer on the loose, he may have no choice.

Ellie’s determined to find her father no matter the cost. But as she and her gorgeous mountain of a guide fight their way through an unforgiving wilderness, they find themselves in the crosshairs of a dangerous man in search of revenge. And they are now his prey…

Preorder your copy of Gone Too Deep at Amazon or Barnes & Noble!

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