I confess. I hate, hate, hate summer. All that sun, surf, heat–it’s enough to drive me indoors for good. Not for me the swimming, boating, outdoorsy activities that have hordes of the rest of you pining for Memorial Day weekend.
Kind of weird considering I was born on an island. Would I have been more of a beach bunny had we remained there? Maybe. Maybe not.
All I know is that my own particular chemical makeup yearns for cool weather, the crunch of fallen leaves, the evocative scent of wood smoke from a fireplace. I pine for the sharp autumn air, the gorgeous promise of sweater weather, honeycrisp apples and hot tea (though I will admit to a fondness for summer fruits).
How did an island-born, Florida & Texas raised gal get to be a lover of autumn?
I will lay a huge portion of the credit down to reading Trixie Belden as an impressionable 10-year-old. Trixie was so awesome! Thirteen and going on adventures in the wilds of White Plains, NY. They rode horses and had this thing called “Indian Summer” (a term which I promptly looked up, but confused the heck out of me). I fell in love with this world (even more so than Nancy Drew, who, at her advanced age of 18 seemed so out of reach).
I wanted to be a Bob-White and have adventures, too. I wanted to go to White Plains (so exotic!), learn to ride English style, and eventually, I wanted to live at Crabapple Farm, have brothers and a best friend like Honey Wheeler.
Eventually, I learned to ride a horse (Western, not English). I visited my late father’s ranch (in Mexico) and never have made it to White Plains…though I’ve been several places in New York state.
Instead of living Trixie’s adventures, I write my own–and set them in the Texas Hill Country, which, in retrospect, became my version of Trixie’s world–a small town, semi-isolated from the hustle & bustle of the “real” world, populated by a close-knit group of friends and family. Yup. I got the pattern, and I owe it to Trixie and her friends.
Readers, what book(s) or stories influenced you someway in real life?