Join Me for a Flying Tour of the Real-Life Settings in Storming

Join Me for a Flying Tour of the Real-Life Settings in Storming

Ready to step back in time with me to 1920s western Nebraska?

Storming A Dieselpunk Adventure by K.M. WeilandUsually, when I write a book, my settings are contained wholly in my imagination–and maybe Google images. But with my dielselpunk/historical novel Storming (which releases this Friday–woohoo!), I got to experience the special treat of setting a story in a place with which I am intimately familiar: my own stomping grounds here in western Nebraska.

Back in August, when the leaves were still attached, I hopped in my trusty red triplane and did a photoshoot of all the spots in the valley that were featured in the book. Join me for a fly-through of Storming‘s settings! (I’ve included the chapter number with the photos, so you can come back and look at the settings again once you’ve read the book.)

1 Lake Minatar Scotsbluff Nebraska Storming Chapter 1

Chapter 1: Lake Minatare

In Chapter One, we find biplane pilot protagonist Hitch Hitchcock back in his hometown for the first time in nine years, flying over a newly-made irrigation run-off lake–where he nearly rams his plane into two falling bodies.

2 Lake Mintare Scottsbluf Nebraska Storming Chapter 1

Chapter 1: Lake shore

This is where Hitch lands his plane to go looking for survivors.

3 Scottsbluff Nebraska Hayfield Airfield Storming Chapter 2

Chapter 2: A hayfield-turned-airfield

This is the most important setting in the book: a farmer’s hayfield turned into an airfield/pilots’ camp for the duration of Col. Bonney Livingstone and His Extravagant Flying Circus’s competition.

4 Scottsbluff Nebraska Broadway Lincoln Hotel Storming Chapter 6

Chapter 6: Lincoln Hotel

After Hitch takes the strange fallen jumper Jael under his wing, they head to town for some lunch, passing the impressive historic Lincoln Hotel on their way.

5 Scottsbluff Nebraska Broadway Tallmons Storming Chapter 7

Chapter 7: Dan and Rosie’s Cafe (Now Tallmon’s Jewelry Store)

Imagine this place 100 years ago as the cutest cafe you’ve ever seen. That’s where Hitch wishes he could order a steak that first day.

6 Scottsbluff Nebraska Broadway Hospital Storming Chapter 13

Chapter 13: Hospital

This wouldn’t be a self-respecting adventure story without some injuries, so naturally I needed a hospital. This, however, is not the hospital. That gray building in the back is at the right address. But no old turn-of-the-century hospital. Go figure.

7 Scottsbluff Nebraska Broadway Campbell's House Storming Chapter 14

Chapter 14: Sheriff Campbell’s House

Our not-so-upstanding sheriff is pretty proud of his big white house. This isn’t exactly how I ended up writing Campbell’s house (no dormer windows), but it’s close.

8 Scottsbluff Nebraska Apple Trees Storming Chapter 14

Chapter 14: Carpenters’ Apple Orchard

After making deals with the devil, Hitch makes a more sensible sort of deal with Jael in the apple orchard belonging to the Carpenter family.

9 Courthouse

Chapter 43: Courthouse/Jail

Quite a number of people end up going through here before the book’s over.

11 Graveyard

Chapter 43: Graveyard

I won’t say how many people end up going through here. But it was kind of fun to find headstones with names that matched a few of the characters’ in the book:

11 Graveyard Campbell

11 Graveyard Carpenter

11 Graveyard Smith

Scotts Bluff National Monument (1)

Scotts Bluff National Monument

And finally there’s the gorgeous Bluff, where quite a few important scenes take place.

Scotts Bluff National Monument (2)

Scotts Bluff National Monument (3)

K.M. Weiland Storming

Thanks for joining me for a summery soar through my characters’ backyards. Now you’ll know what to imagine while you’re reading the book!

For more images from Storming, you can check out its Settings board on Pinterest.

Also, don’t forget there’s still a day left to enter last week’s drawing (leading up to the BIG drawing on Launch Day, December 4th) for a unique bookend made entirely from one of Shakespeare’s plays.

Giveaway! Win a Shakespearean Bookend

Let’s chat! Do you like reading about places you’ve personally visited–or places you’ve never been? Tell me in the comments!

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  1. Michael Ryan says:

    I have read two novels set in places and times where I was present. I found it a little creepy. I thought the plane was real!

  2. So cool! It looks beautiful in your area. 🙂 As a reader, I generally prefer reading fantasy or historical fiction—so definitely places I haven’t seen. Same goes for what I like to write; I like to explore unknown places in my writing.

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      I usually prefer the unknown myself. But this was ridiculously fun for a change. It was fun researching the history of the area too. I learned a ton of stuff I hadn’t known before, even though I’ve lived here forever.

  3. David Villalva says:

    Ha, that was a super fun and creative post. Well done and thanks so much.

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      Thanks! It was originally supposed to be just silliness, but the plane turned out way better than I expected.

  4. Lorna G. Poston says:

    Nifty! Thanks for sharing the photos. 🙂

  5. What a fun post! Loved the photos … you sneaky girl! 🙂

  6. Ok, I’m officially homesick! Snowbird in AZ I am NOT. Your book will have to keep me company until April 🙂

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      The book’s set in August–which is when these pix were taken. It’s my favorite month in my favorite place!

  7. Tamara Meyers says:

    Did you notice the leaf next to the plane in second photo? If anyone thought the plane in that picture is real they must think that the trees are huge in the mid-west!

  8. Jim Tucker says:

    I have been building an image file in my PC of cool places (both real and imagined) I use for setting inspiration in the fantasy novel I’m writing. It helps, sometimes, when I’m stuck in a scene, or changing places in the story, to bring up my “ideas for the book” photo file and let my mind just wander there a while.

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      I do that *all* the time. I work so much better when I have a concrete idea of the setting and other details. Pinterest is great for that!

  9. victorineoriginals says:

    Great photos! I see the Bluffs out my bedroom window each day. So pretty! I’ll have to get your book now. 🙂

  10. Hi, K.M. Great idea to show us the places in the book! In historical novels, it always helps to have context. Thanks for the great idea and the effort it took to do this. Deena

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      One thing that was fun about this book was that, since so much of is set outdoors, the settings look basically the same now as they did back in 1920.

  11. Fun flying with ya’. But I am too dizzy from it to make any sensible comment. 😉

  12. Bought Storming this morning then took the tour on your lovely biplane. 😉 What a clever promo idea. I like to have photos (or at least drawings) of the places I write and read about – brings it to life for me. If the book I’m reading is set in a real place (almost always since I’m a history geek) I go on Google Earth and check it out, but actually this is more fun. Will be back to check it out again after I’ve read the book.

    • K.M. Weiland says:

      Google Earth-ing the locations of a novel you’re reading is a cool idea! I need to get in the habit of doing that. I do so much better when I can visualize things.

  13. Congrats, K.M.! How fun to take the journey back in time with you. I definely enjoy visiting places in my stories. . .from London to Israel to the grand state of Texas!

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