Tales & Tidings

Books, thoughts, news, recipes, and more from the northern Rocky Mountains.

An Unexpected Road Trip


It's release day for Clayton's Honor! It's a late announcement, and I haven't done the usual press for this book due to my insane personal schedule of late.


Now, onto why I was so scattered of mind that I belatedly announced the new book release.


Life. It happens.


When it comes to planning vacations or any downtime, I tend to make plans, cancel, remake them, change my plans, and then settle back on the original plan. I've found that with the big trips, planning is necessary. The rest of the time, the last-minute execution is best. I tend to go and go and go like the Energizer bunny, and once in a while I hit a wall. This time it was more like the face of the Grand Canyon. I looked up, saw what needed to still be done, and my brain said, "Nope."


I woke up on Wednesday morning, packed up, and hit the road. The plan was to drive down to West Yellowstone and stay the night, but once there I changed my mind. It was noisy in West Yellowstone and I needed calm and quiet. I got back in the car and headed for Alpine, WY which is about thirty miles south of Jackson.


I live in a spectacular area of northwest Montana, a place I have loved since I first moved here sixteen years ago, so I'm familiar with beautiful places. Once I reached Star Valley and the Palisades Resivoir, I was in my own little version of heaven.


I was beyond exhausted the entire drive, but once I reached Alpine, it was as though that weariness slipped away, second by second.


What I immediately noticed was the peacefulness of the area. I heard the birds, the breeze, and the occasional rustle of leaves, but that was about it.


I drove immediately to the small lodge where I'd be staying the night. I was treated to the serene setting above.


I met a few friends and what will be the inspiration for two of the horses in future stories.


The view from my room was inspiring. Had I not been utterly exhausted I would have spent the remainder of the evening writing. Instead, I sat with my pup by my side and looked over this view until darkness began to settle. I was there only one night, but I could have stayed for a month.


The following morning I got back in the car and headed north to home. Though the round trip ended up at over sixteen hours, it was well worth the time.


Some writers say that you can't wait to be inspired; you just have to write. Others wait for inspiration to hit. I believe that inspiration is within us at all times, but we must continue to feed it on a daily basis. When our resources are depleted, we must do whatever it takes to restore our imagination and enthusiasm. If that means disappearing for a couple of days for no apparent reason, then so be it.

Meet the Author

MK McClintock writes stories for those who enjoy escaping to another time and place, where their imaginations are free and open to simple pleasures and stories with plenty of happy-ever-afters—at least for the good guys. Villains get a different kind of ending.

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