By population, California is the nation’s largest state, holding twelve percent of the population. By area it is larger than every state except for Alaska and Texas and it occupies around two-thirds of the lower forty-eight’s west coast. Its population is diverse: forty percent white, 38 percent Hispanic and thirteen percent Asian.
California is so large, in fact, that it really has three distinct geographic regions that might, in their own rights be states. Indeed, on several occasions, the southern part of the state has attempted to secede. In one instance, only the Civil War prevented the state from splitting in two.
I live in Northern California ¾San Francisco ¾close to Silicon Valley, the hub of the high tech industry. It is the home of many famous writers, past and present and to mention any few would be a slight to others. The SF Bay Area is a welcoming place for writers’ It hosts an annual Litquake literary event that draws tens of thousands of bookophiles as well as numerous independent bookstores, writer’s groups galore and salons where reading events take place on a daily basis. They say that in Southern California everyone is an actor with a day job. The same might be said of writers in Northern California.
Southern California is both geologically and culturally a very different place. It is a land of urban sprawl and home to about twenty-two million folks. Everyone knows its major industry is entertainment, and all the glitzy peripheral industries that go with it. Nearly every giant entertainment corporation has staked a presence in the area. But is also is the venue for a vast aerospace and military complex. The land is literally a patchwork of military bases, such a Camp Pendleton, Vandenberg, the naval complex in San Diego, to name a few. And I would be remiss if I failed to mention Southern California’s fabulous beaches.
California’s third distinct region is the Central Valley. Although its population is relatively small by California standards ¾five million ¾ it is know as “America’s breadbasket” due to its enormous corporate agricultural industry. In addition to a cornucopia of food crops, the region also produces cotton, oil and gas. Politically and culturally, the Central Valley is more akin to Oklahoma and the Texas panhandle than it is to the coastal regions of the state. Its large cities, Fresno and Bakersfield, are famous for the honkytonk sounds of its native country stars, Buck Owens and Merle Haggard.
The Flight of the Sorceress, winner of a 2011 Global E-book Award for historical literature and a finalist for a 2012 EPIC award for historical fiction.
· Burning Questions, Part One of the 1970s Trilogy.
· A Shot in the Arm, Part Two, currently in pre-publication editing.
· The Fourth Conspirator, Part Three of the Trilogy, under contract to Whiskey Creek.
My website: www.agauchepress.com