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Settings: Writing What Appeals to Me – Guest Post by Alexa Bourne, author of Her Highland Champion

I’m delighted to welcome back fellow Celtic Hearts member Alexa Bourne to my blog today!

Romance, Scottish Romance, Contemporary Romance, romantic suspense, novellaI’ve been a published writer for just over a year now and I think it’s safe to say settings are my forte. I’ve had several friends and readers comment how my descriptions of my settings make them want to book a flight. This pleasantly surprised me. I hadn’t thought about specifically writing to spark tourism ideas. I just wrote what appealed to me.

Part of the reason readers love my descriptions, I’m convinced, is due to the settings I’ve chosen. So far, my published and submitted works are all set in places I’ve lived, visited and loved. Indeed, my published books have been set in my favorite happy places- England and Scotland. As I sat there and wrote the story, I wanted my readers to “see” and understand why I love the Highlands, Edinburgh, and Sunderland. I always thought of the things about the city or village that spoke to me, things that put me in awe. My full length books that are under consideration (or are still in the revision stage) are all set in New England. I grew up here. It’s what I know well. Yes, there are negatives (like vicious winters), but there is so much to love about these states too. My next suspense novellas I intend to share are set in Thailand and Mexico. I spent time in Thailand as a tourist and in Mexico I studied Spanish and Mexican culture. In those books, I’m working hard to share both the discomfort AND “the rush” of being in a foreign country where I don’t speak the language.

So I guess you could say when writing, my goal is to bring glimpses of our fascinating world a little closer to the readers. I figure I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to these amazing places and so it is my duty to share as much as I can. I hope, if you read my books, you agree I’ve done just that.


Heather relaxed as the streets of Fort William gave way to rolling hills and open spaces. The scenery took her breath away. Grass so green, sky so blue, scattered clouds like cotton balls. Flowers grew wildly in the fields. Malcolm took the Road to the Isles, one of the most scenic routes in all of Scotland. Dark clouds huddled in the distance. Sheep grazed on the land, and there were a few cattle by some of the more remote homes as they drove closer to Glenhalish.

Malcolm groaned.

“What’s wrong?”

“We’ll have rain shortly.”

Heather’s smile widened, for even at the darkest point of a miserable afternoon, the Highlands still held a mystical beauty. That much about the country she did remember.

She gasped.

Malcolm turned to her. “What is it?”

“Some more memories coming through, not so much about me but about Scotland, and where we are.”

“Any memories are good.”

Mist covered much of the horizon as they drove west. The rains held off, however, and by the time they reached the bed and breakfast, the sun was struggling to make another appearance.

Heather stared at the ancient building before her as she stepped from the car. A simple home, he’d said while they waited for the doctor to release her, but his description had not done it justice. The building was a castle and stretched far along the land. A Union Jack flag flew in the breeze at the top of a parapet next to the flag of St. Andrew.

To the right of the front door was a sign in Gaelic, Ceud Mile Failte. A hundred thousand welcomes.

Romance, Scottish Romance, Contemporary Romance, romantic suspense, novellaBio:

Alexa Bourne is a teacher by day and a romance writer by nights, weekends, and all school holidays. She also teaches online classes for writers throughout the year. She writes romantic suspense and contemporary romance and is thrilled to have the chance to share her love of Great Britain with readers everywhere.

When she’s not concocting sinister plots and steamy love scenes or traveling and exploring new cultures, Alexa spends her time reading, watching brainless TV and thinking about exercising.


Twitter: @AlexaBourne



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4 thoughts on “Settings: Writing What Appeals to Me – Guest Post by Alexa Bourne, author of Her Highland Champion”

  1. So many of us read to travel vicariously to exotic places, and if your excerpt here is any indication, Alexa, you’re not going to let your readers down. I think it’s great that you share your travels via your writing. Such details effectively add different textures and layers to any story. Keep up the good work!

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