This week, with books in tow, I road-tripped through the American Southwest. As a hiker, I’ve always been most drawn to lush forests, but I can honestly say I now have an appreciation for the grand, mystical, majestic beauty of the desert.
At Zion National Park in southern Utah I got to walk under my first waterfall, something I have always wanted to do. In this picture, a poor hiker is scooting around me, probably thinking, “Get out of the way, weird lady,” but I had to stop and take it all in. Standing beneath Emerald Pools Waterfall, I was so thrilled I cried. Can you see the waterfall hitting the back of my hand?
Photo by Mr. Eve Messenger.
In Northern Arizona, iron-rich red rocks and distant horizons in every–I mean every– direction made me feel as if I was on Mars. The largest boulders in this picture are four times bigger than my car.
Traveling through Navajo country, I developed an addiction to fry bread, which is used for sandwiches and tacos (and probably other things), but my absolute favorite was fry bread hot and fresh out of the oven, drizzled with honey and sprinkled with powdered sugar.
And here’s the book I read in my hotel room each night. I had no idea The Winner’s Curse would be such a page-turner, but it really was, and Kestrel and Arin’s forbidden love story hooked me so hard. Marie Rutkoski’s book has everything. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
I’m packed and ready to head out for a four-day, three-night writing retreat. My first one, all by myself. I booked a deal for three FREE nights at a hotel and, starting today at about 1pm, I will hunker down in a hotel room and work hard on my novel–a dark, modern YA fantasy I mentioned a few weeks back. Distraction-free for four days, I’m hoping to write enough to put a big dent in my CampNaNoWriMo goal of 60,000 words for the month.
After writing all day, I’ll reward myself with a show, dinner, and/or chatting and high-fiving with interesting people from all over the world at the blackjack tables. That’s right. I will be in. . .
Since I’ll be so immersed in writing my new book you probably won’t see me around for a while.
Of course I’ll pop in and check on you, my wonderful writer and book junkie friends (hotel WIFI permitting).
Speaking of book junkies. . . my Kindle Paperwhite is brimming with books to be read during the trip. Not that I’ll be able to get to them all , but it’s nice to have a choice, right? What We Need to Survive by Elena Johansen (writer and blogger friend extraordinaire) will definitely be the first book I read, but after that what do you think I should try next?
Kindle TBR for the Vegas Trip: What We Need to Survive by Elena Johansen
The Uninvited by Cat Winters Thanks for the recommendation Beth @ Betwixt-the-pages! Sapphire Blue (Red Ruby Trilogy #2) by Kerstin Gier The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh The Last Orphans by N.W. Harris (Thanks to Amanda @ cover2covermom for finding this great deal.)
The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma ( I was disappointed in 17 & Gone, but Suma is a good writer, so I’d like to give her another try.)
Gambit by C.L. Denault (Melanie Noelle Bernard, this book is on this list because of you The Day We Are Born by Philippa Cameron