Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Paula Quinn's Guest Blog: Inspiration from the Isle of Skye
You might be surprised to learn that I didn’t always want to write about Scotland and Highlanders. Let’s face it, writing the perfect man in the perfect setting isn’t easy. (And Scotland and Highlanders are as perfect as perfect gets.) I began my writing career with Norman-French heroes and a Welsh prince. I was perfectly content writing about England and her rich history filled with famous kings…and men who wore leather armor and breeches.
Or so I thought.
At first I resisted the pull. I’ve always felt a heaviness or sorrow whenever I looked at pictures of Scotland’s rugged, isolated landscapes, and don’t get me started on bagpipes and the flood of emotions the sound of them pulls from me. I was afraid to delve into it’s history because I knew it would touch me in a profound way.
I was right.
Eilean a’ Cheò (or, The Misty Isle) is the largest and most northerly island in the inner Hebrides of Scotland. It’s home to the majestic Black and Red Cuillin mountains, the breathtaking and isolated Camasunary Bay, and in my world, it’s home to the most fearsome clan in the Highlands, the MacGregors.
After writing six books about this rebellious clan, it’s safe to say that I’m in love with the MacGregors. From Callum in LAIRD OF THE MIST, to Colin from my latest release, CONQUERED BY A HIGHLANDER, these MacGregor men (and women) all have the same things in common. They’re passionate about what they love. They would give up all for their home, their beliefs, and for the ones who hold their heart. Because of them, Scotland no longer represents sorrow and heaviness to me. Instead, it embodies valor and defiance, romance, and the importance of kin.
Writing about Scotland’s true “Children of the Mist” has taught me much about determination and honor. I have my favorites, each one for different reasons, but I love them all and I plan on writing about the MacGregors for a long time to come.
What is your favorite Highlander book (it doesn’t have to be mine) and why? One commenter will be randomly chosen to win a signed copy of CONQUERED BY A HIGHLANDER.