Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Hi, everyone,
I hope you'll forgive me. I'm reposting an old post today due to limited internet access and my forgetful self. This article is still relevant, however, because every time a new book is thought about, we have to decide where to place the characters. My newest soon-to-be-released book and a blurb will follow at the end.

Finding a location in which to plop our characters has tremendous bearing on the story, but can be a bit of a dilemma for the author. Several elements come into play and must be considered. For instance what is the time period? Is the story a historical, contemporary, or futuristic? Is the story a time travel or paranormal?

I decided early on that all my stories would take place in my native state of Texas. This worked for me because first and foremost I'm comfortable writing about Texas and would need little additional research. Next, the state has any terrain I might need for any time period and with its multiple areas to choose from, each story can be unique unto itself.

When it came time to choose an area in which to base my Texas Code Series, the natural choice for me was right here in North Central Texas. The history of the Bennings and McTiernans started back in 1859 when Ian Benning and Dermot McTiernan came from Ireland with its political unrest to start their lives anew in Texas with the land grant amended in 1850. The Texas Emigration and Land Company offered 160 acres to single men, plus a free cabin, seed, and musket balls.

North Central Texas Land - Peters Colony

The two men received their land located north of Dallas in the originally named Peters Colony. Each generation will have a chance to tell their stories in and around the fictitious town of McTiernan, along with the ever changing landscape that will either be a blessing or a challenge all the way to present day when the first novel, CODE OF HONOR, takes place.

El Pasofar west Texas, a beautiful area of desert and Mountains, is the location of, Book Two, CODE OF CONSCIENCE. CODE OF JUSTICE, Book Three, is set in Dallas, back in North Central Texas, and Book Four, CODE OF LAW, may be in the lush land of The Hill Country.
 El Paso, Texas and the Franklin Mountains
                                                        Dallas, Texas, City Skyline

Two other areas of this great state range from the mountains of Big Bend, to the coast at Galveston. 
 Big Bend National Park

Galveston, Texas

My most recent stories, The Brides of Texas  Code Series, are also set in Texas. Book One, Katie and the Irish Texan and Book Two, Matelyn and the Texas Ranger are set in Dallas (1875) and Galveston (1877).

Book Three, Angel and the Texan From County Cork, is set in Denison in North Central Texas close to the Texas Panhandle.

Jamey O'Donnell has reached a crossroads in his life. It's time to make his own way and stop living off the charity of others, specifically from his brother-in-law, Ian Benning. Off to find his new life, Jamey stops to help an old friend only to find out the friend has been killed. Can he help the widow restart her life and then walk away? Will he be able to ignore the newly awakened emotions she brings to the surface?

Angel Rivers buried her first husband on the trail after a short three month marriage. Now, one year later, her second husband, Will, has been shot and killed leaving her to fend for herself, to work a ranch with little to no knowledge. When the stranger shows up in her barn on the coldest day she's ever experienced, can she trust that he's her husband's friend and not a henchman sent by her neighbor? The same one she suspects of the killing? Will she embrace her bad luck in marriage and bury the feelings stirred by the stranger to live a life alone?

Anyway, you see what I mean about the choice of location. My stories could be located anywhere in our beautiful country. The details might change depending which area is chosen and that has the potential to redirect a storyline. My choice was logical for me and I hope resonates well with you the reader.
Thank you for visiting with Sweethearts of the West today. I hope you'll leave a comment to tell me your thoughts on this subject. Love hearing from you!


  1. Hi, Carra--listen, you do not need to apologize for reposting one you've used before. I do this often, either when I'm stressed, or if it's something I can use as a guest blogger. Others do, too. I save all mine, and of course all our posts are nicely and conveniently Archived on our blog.
    If a blog is good, it's worth using again. On SOTW, I have posts back to 2009 when we first created this blog.
    This one was particular good, because some of us have been discussing the erroneous locations the movie makers selected for the mini-series Texas Rising. I mentioned one day that Texas had seven distinct geographical regions, and many did not know that.
    Thanks for this one--you make a great point with it--location, location, location!

    1. Thanks, Celia. Honesty above all else, right? I came close to forgetting - again - and didn't want you or Caroline to take me out and shoot me. Lol I love being here with this wonderful group of authors. Thank you for your support!

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