Hubby and I just returned from the Central Coast (California) community of Arroyo Grande. The weather was wonderful! Sunny and gorgeous. As we drove down the coast, the ocean sparkled. People who want to visit California beaches would be smart to go in February when the weather is often sunny as can be. In the summer, often the fog rolls in, making it chilly.
The weather was quite a contrast to the previous weekend when we were in snowy Chicago. We loved that too, though. In fact, I thanked the organizers of Love is Murder, our reason for being there, for having such a lovely snow storm for our entertainment.
The reason we were in Arroyo Grande was for me to participate with the Central Coast chapter of Sisters in Crime in a library presentation–which I did, of course. I’m always up for talking about my books and meeting new people. A chance to go to the coast was a huge incentive. We used to live in Oxnard (which is near Ventura) about one mile from the beach, and frankly, I miss the proximity to the ocean.
It was in Oxnard that I first became interested in writing about law enforcement. Our first house was in a neighborhood with police officers, firemen, and Navy personnel and their families. We partied and had coffee with our neighbors and got to know them all very well. Years later, my youngest daughter married a police officer who loved to tell me stories about what happened on his shift–he even took me on a tour of the police station and on a rather scary ride-along.
In my Rocky Bluff series (much darker than my Deputy Tempe Crabtree series), I’ve drawn quite a bit on my experiences from the days I hung out with those policemen and their families. If you’re interested, here’s a video about the latest book, Smell of Death,
And to bring this back around to the beach, the Rocky Bluff series is set in a fictional beach community somewhere on the coast between Ventura and Santa Barbara–with some resemblance to Oxnard back in the time when I lived there.
Traveling around to promote books is fun, though not at all profitable. What I truly like best is meeting new people and my travels have been a great way to do it.
Now, back to working on my income taxes. Ugh!