Friday, February 3, 2012

On Location with the Gallagher Family - Part One

From a Montana ranch, to the Scottish Highlands, New Orleans, and a Kentucky horse farm - on location with the Gallagher family. 

In the first book of the Gallagher series, Gallagher's Pride, we visit two of my absolute favorite places - Montana and Scotland. Having spent many wonderful years in Montana, it seemed only natural to set my first series here. Montana is still considered by many who have never stepped foot on her soil, to be a wild land of cowboys and Indians. It is this 'ideal' that is the setting for the majority of each story.

Primarily set on the Hawk's Peak ranch, this story unfolds as the reader gets a glimpse of what I believe that area of Montana would have been like in the late 19th century. The train system had begun to make it's way into Montana, though that had been Butte whereas the fictional town of Briarwood is set north of Bozeman, an area I preferred and therefore I took certain liberties in Brenna's transportation, though I'm certain, or at least hopeful, readers won't object too harshly.

Montana is a land of rugged beauty and glorious landscapes. When I walk through the woods or hike up the mountains, I often imagine what life would have been like two hundred years ago (of course without the aid of sturdy hiking boots). I see those images in my mind and can easily transport my imagination back to that time. Readers will also notice an absence of native peoples in my stories. The omission was intentional as I preferred to focus solely on the family and their purposes, struggles and relationships.

Scotland! One of my absolute favorite lands and a place I love and miss often. With such a fondness for this land, I knew Brenna must have her roots and upbringing in that remarkable of all places. The Scottish setting in Gallagher's Pride is focused on Brenna's life at her home and therefore the surrounding lands and nearby Edinburgh aren't mentioned in great detail. I do remember my first time in that city and in truth I drove quickly away and into the Highlands.

Driving in cities, let alone for the first time on the wrong side of the road with a standard transmission, makes me a wee bit crazy. Needless to say I was far more relaxed once outside of the city and surrounding towns. While in the Highlands, I was met with some of the most glorious beauty I'd ever seen. So different than Montana, yet just as beautiful. I had originally intended to have Brenna's home set farther north, but it worked better for the story to have her closer to Edinburgh so that the scenic descriptions would be more focused on Montana.

You'll learn more about the Gallagher locations when the next installment, Gallagher's Hope, is released. Until then, I hope you come to learn more about Montana and Scotland and perhaps love them as much as I do. 

All Images © MK McClintock

No comments:

Post a Comment