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Coming Up With Ideas by Carrie Stuart Parks


For the past two books, I’ve let my husband choose the setting. I’m convinced he goes by the quality of the barbecue in the area, how close it is to one of his banjo-picking buddies, or where he wants to go for his bucket list.

Kodiak Island, Alaska, the location for Formula of Deception, was in the bucket list category. He wanted to see the Kodiak bears. I knew nothing, I mean NOTHING about the place, so I immediately ordered twelve books on the region and contacted the only two people I knew who either lived there in the past (Priscilla Patterson,) or currently lives there (Voni Harris.) In both cases they were absolutely a blessing and a treasure-trove of information.

Husband Rick and I needed to actually visit the island to even know the kind of questions I needed to ask to make the location believable. Kodiak is surrounded by smaller islands, but they all seemed to have names and didn’t have what I wanted on them—hence Ruuwaq, an invented place.

We weren’t able to get up to Kodiak until about a month before my book deadline, so I wrote around the parts I needed answers to.

I’d go into all that we learned while visiting there, but I really want the reader to be surprised by the story. Thank you for stopping by and taking a look at my book! Blessings, Carrie.

Writing Expectations by Robert E. Dunn

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