THE ARMCHAIR ROMANTIC - by Kathy Ivan

I'm an anomaly.  I freely admit it.  Unlike everyone else I know, I rarely travel.  Vacations?  What is that?  Exotic places around the globe have never been graced with my esteemed presence.  Other than an occasional writer's conference, you will rarely see my eyeballs outside of the town where I live. 

But writers write about places other than where they live, right?  If I only wrote about the town where I live, trust me, most of you would be bored out of your minds.  There's not a whole lot shaking around here. 


I'm a voracious armchair traveler, though.  Through the magic of books, I've visited many places around the world.  I've been to some of the most exotic locales on earth without leaving the comforts of home.

I've walked on the beaches in Hawaii, my toes curling in the black sands while the crystal blue waters lap gently, each wave curls against the shore.  The trade winds blow a soothing breeze, and the scent of hibiscus and plumeria fill the air. 

I've strolled along the Champs-Elysees in Paris, smelled the freshly baked bread and pastries.  Jumped back as reckless drivers sped through the streets and dined at sidewalk cafes across from my love on a romantic getaway for two, while sipping champagne and sharing intimate moments.


I've visited the pyramids in Egypt.  Slalomed down the Alps.  Gone deep sea fishing off the Florida Keys. 

Good writers transport me (and hopefully you, too) to places we might otherwise never see through the magic of their words.  They bring alive the sounds, scents and tastes of every element, so much so that if you were to close your eyes for just a moment, you'd find yourself transported deep within the pages of the story—feel as though you are right there with the hero and heroine—experiencing every nuance of their surroundings.


This is what I try to bring to life when I'm writing.  My romantic suspense books are set in and around New Orleans, Louisiana.  The French Quarter.  The Big Easy.  Just hearing the name of the place evokes preconceived notions of what it's like.  I want you to hear the Cajun and Creole dialect in the words.  Feel the energy of the crowds on Bourbon Street at night.  Experience the joy and excitement of Mardi Gras.  Smell the spicy jambalaya so hot and fresh it makes your mouth water for the first bite. 

So, the next time wanderlust strikes and you can't physically get away on some tropical escape—step within the pages of a book and fly away. 

Kathy Ivan is busy writing her next New Orleans based romantic suspense, and wishing she was there.  Her current release, Connor's Gamble, is on sale for the next two days for $.099 at most e-book retailers. 


Comments

J Wachowski said…
I'm good with all kinds of travel, Kathy. Armchair or ambulatory. And I love New Orleans! My family traveled there for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary and it was a hoot. Alligators, saxophones, beignets, beads, boobs--we saw it all. Congrats on your new book--can't wait to visit!
While I've traveled many parts of the world, there's no place like home. :) I think I would be happy staying there most of the time (with the occasional trip to the beach). But by far, I feel like books are my favorite trips ever. ;)
chris keniston said…
I've been blessed to find friends who love to travel while my husband who loves his house stays home - LOL

As a young woman my mom would say to friends: she had her son the lawyer, her daughter the doctor and her daughter the gypsy- yeah- Im the gypsy!

I haven't changed. Most times when a distant locale is in my books the reader is seeing it through my memories.

And often my bucket list grows when I read a good story set someplace I haven't been - gotta love good books!
Pamela Stone said…
Hi Kathy,

I do both. Yes, I love to travel and drive along the beach. Any beach! Any time! However, like you, I spend a lot of time traveling through books, both mine and other writers. Best of both worlds I suppose.
Phyllis said…
I so love to travel! There were so many years that I couldn't go anywhere due to work or financial restraints. When I did, it was the obligatory trip home to visit family. Don't get me wrong, I loved those family trips, but I really wanted more. Now, cruises are my favorite way to travel.

Although books can take your imagination to the distant locals, but for me, not as good as the real thing.
Jana Richards said…
The majority of my travel comes through books too, although I have had the opportunity to go to a few places. I like travel, but I love home too. And if I'm travelling through a book, I don't have to deal with airports!
Elise Warner said…
I love to travel--Australia is a favorite with three visits,I'm in love with Italy. Adored Greece and England,Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Since my husband's been ill I rely on memories and books.
Rita said…
Oh! What a lovely post. Thank you. I used to call my escapes to other places in the pages of a book mini vacations. They felt real to me. I’ve been lucky enough to travel but I very much enjoy being taken to place through words. I lived in New Orleans long before it was ‘cleaned up’. The gambling boats hadn’t arrived and Mardi Gras was a different kind of wild. The whole city was rough and dirty. The people were real and it was wonderful. Cajun music is some of my favorite.
Kathy Ivan said…
I'm posting this because it wouldn't let Linda post for some reason:

Reading your post evoked actual memories for me. Hawaii. Check. Champs-Elysees. Check. Pyramids. Check. I haven't slalomed down the Alps or gone deep sea fishing, but then, I'm more of a viewer than a doer. And before (and after) I visit a place I enjoy reading books set there. After a trip to China I read some fiction set during the Han Dynasty. I read a book from Kat Martin's series The Brodies of Alaska while visiting Juneau and Skagway. My love for reading feeds my love for travel, and vice versa. Great post, Kathy


Linda Steinberg
All Roads Lead to Love. Embrace the Journey
website www.lindasteinberg.com
The French Deception 2013 http://amzn.to/1eL93uY
Only With the Heart 2013 http://amzn.to/1a57Wlh
vicki batman said…
Hi, Kathy! I always had a family vacation and we took the boys on those as well. When Handsome started the company and we hosted two conventions each year, then I began traveling more. And as the boys grew, I traveled more. There's still places I'd love to go and just as many I'd soon skip.
jean harrington said…
New Orleans is magical. Wbat a perfect place to locate your books. Best of luck with all your imaginary travels. I've gone on travels like that too. They're a writer's world tour.
Cathy Perkins said…
Oh I do love to wander - and New Orleans is a favorite place! Good luck with your new story :)
Kathy Ivan said…
Thanks so much to everybody for coming out and traveling the globe with me today. Whether you visit places in person or within the pages of the books, may your journeys be filled with excitement and joy (although as a romantic suspense writer I also want to throw in a handsome hero).

Popular Posts