By Kimberly Frost
By Kimberly Frost
I grew up in a suburb of Detroit. In Texas, where I live now, that would already be considered “up north,” but, during my childhood, we didn’t consider Detroit to be up north. Though we did consider Tennessee (where my paternal grandparents were from) down south. Go figure.
In any event, “Up North” was a very specific place in my mind. It was not where Santa Claus and the elves lived or home to the Canadian Mounties and Wayne Gretzky. It was in my own state, three hundred miles from the center of the universe, a.k.a. my house.
Michigan happens to be one of the luckiest places in the world in that it is shaped like a mitten, making the relative geography of the state a snap to illustrate. I was from the thumb area. Up North was near the fingertips.
Each summer we traveled to my great aunt and uncle’s cottage, which had lake access—always a very big deal in Michigan. My great uncle had swum across the five-mile lake, apparently to prove that he could, since there was nothing in the story about anyone, man or giant fish, pursuing him. There was also no one tagging along with him. No one in a boat. No buddy swimmer. So not the safest way to prove he was a great swimmer, but people didn’t think overly much about safety back then, did they? And I have to say that I admire how rugged people were and how self-reliant. When one is three miles into a solo five-mile swim, there is no turning back. You’ve got to have faith in yourself to pull that off. It probably also helps to enjoy your own company. Since I’m someone who likes to live in her own head, I admire that, too.
Anyway, I’ve been thinking about that lake, which was a focal point of my childhood and which I associate with lazy summer days spent swimming, sunbathing and reading, running through the woods, riding in the fishing boat, and hurrying to eat ice cream cones before they melted over my hands. It was the best of times. For a glimpse of the fabled lake, see the picture I took a few years ago.
I suppose it’s no surprise then that water figures prominently in my writing and my writing life. I like writing retreats that have a view of water. Lakes, oceans, ponds…just about any body of water will do.
The town in my Southern Witch series sits between two rivers, and water always has a part to play in a Southern Witch story. In Would-Be Witch, Mercutio the ocelot arrives on a raft that’s floating down the river. In Barely Bewitched, Tammy has to escape into the water more than once and Bryn’s magical connection to water is revealed. In Halfway Hexed, well, let’s just say water is a member of the supporting cast again.
Anyway, I haven’t been swimming in a lake or an ocean for several years, but that seems to make little difference. The lake of my childhood lives on in my mind, always quick and ready inspiration when I write. Apparently, you can take the girl out of the lake, but you can’t take the lake out of the girl. And for that, I am grateful.
For a chance to win autographed copies of Would-Be Witch and Barely Bewitched from the Southern Witch series, tell me about your favorite childhood vacations/vacation spots.
3 winners will be chosen
1 winner will receive both Would-Be Witch and Barely Bewitched
2 Winners will receive a copy of Would-Be Witch
US Shipping Only Please
Thanks for inviting me to chat & I hope to see you in the comments…
Warm watery wishes,
P.S. There will be free fiction posted exclusively on my website later this year. Anybody who’s interested in being notified when it’s available should visit my website & sign up for my newsletter. :-)
Want to win Kimberly's Southern Witch Books?
Then be Sure to Leave a Comment on This Post About Your Favorite Childhood Vacation Spot
Include Your Email Address
3 winners will be randomly chosen and announced next Wednesday