April 17, 2011
And true, there is an abundance of open space in Kansas, rolling fields and rock formations, dotted with towns.
The smaller population out on the prairie is so convenient for covert ops, I’m launching my WIP, the second installment of the SENTINEL series there:
Kaelin Trevet paused midway between his car and the old barn as the ground trembled. Carcasses of dried wheat crunched under his boots and invisible fingers crawled up his spine. Stiff from bumping along dirt roads and peering through the moonless night for errant deer, he tensed further as he listened for threat in the icy air. Nothing. Must be paranoia, thanks to his brother Aidan suggesting the enemy was causing earthquakes. Tonight’s drop was two hours south-east of Wichita, Kansas, of all places. No way Asmodai knew he was here.
Lawrence is one town I claim as “home”, having lived there for five years during college. It’s an interesting place, founded for political reasons to keep Kansas free of slavery. Anti-slavery Jayhawkers had to rebuild the town after it was ransacked and burned by pro-slavery Bushwackers in 1863. Their resilience gives writers the scope to which heroes might fall and rebound: they buried their dead and rebuilt, remaining firmly anti-slavery, participating in the Underground Railroad, and supplying travelers on the Oregon Trail. Lawrence school kids take regular field trips to see the preserved wheel ruts. And it retains its flair of freedom, expressed now with art and attitude and influenced by KU, with every bit the sophistication of nearby Kansas City. Today The Hawk still doles out cheap beer near campus, Sunflower Outdoor and Bike is always worth a stop, and the Jayhawk statue still hasn’t left its perch in front of Strong Hall, proving the local legend that a virgin has yet to graduate from KU.
Everyone who drops in to leave a comment or question this week will win a copy of your choice of QUENCHED or QUENCHER or the new crime anthology DEADLY BY THE DOZEN that includes my story “Living on the Blood of Others.”
Betsy Dornbusch’s new urban fantasy, SENTINEL: ARCHIVE OF FIRE is forthcoming from Whiskey Creek in 2011. Under the penname Ainsley, Whiskey Creek Torrid published two of Betsy Dornbusch’s books last year, QUENCHED and QUENCHER. The first installment of the Salt Road Saga, LOST PRINCE, will be published in 2011, also by Torrid. When she’s not traversing I70 on her way to visit Kansas, Betsy splits her time between Superior and Grand Lake, Colorado. She runs a longstanding website, Sex Scenes at Starbucks, edits the magazine Electric Spec, and pretends to be a soccer mom. Nobody’s buying the soccer mom bit, though.