Tag Archives: Scotland

Glenfinnan: Alexa Bourne takes us on a tour in Scotland!

My absolute favorite place in the entire world is Scotland. If I could move tomorrow and have a way to support myself, I would go without looking back. Sadly, I haven’t been able to move there yet, but I have been fortunate enough to travel there on more than one occasion. In doing so, I found the perfect setting for my very first book.

Glenfinnan is a tiny village in the Highlands of Scotland, home to few people and occasional travelers. I first heard of this place in the 1986 movie Highlander. Fascinated with the story, I can’t tell you how many times I watched it. But it wasn’t just the story that drew my attention. It was the historical aspect of Scotland- kilts, clans, Scottish brogues and the most stunning scenery I’d ever seen. When I made plans to visit my family in northern England, I decided to take a trip up to Glenfinnan as well.

I took the train from Edinburgh, a several hour trip through cities, towns and eventually, mountains. When I got to the start of the mountains along the route, my heart expanded and I could almost hear the bagpipes playing in my head. Even with the drizzling rain and dark clouds, the mountains and green hills held such beauty.

Arriving in Glenfinnan, I was treated to a glorious view of the Glenfinnan Monument and Loch Shiel. Green hills with puffy white clouds dusting their tips, full trees blowing with the wind, and waters sparkling like diamonds took my breath away. Indeed, the train actually slowed down so the travelers could take pictures.

While there, I stayed at the Glenfinnan House Hotel (www.glenfinnanhouse.com), which was situated several yards back from the loch. The hotel was big and comfortable, with a fireplace right in the lobby that had crackling flames the day I arrived. With a fancy dining room, a lounge with games and books, and its very own pub, there was truly a room for everyone. Each of these rooms had giant windows overlooking the loch. The second floor held the guest rooms and I was a bit surprised and uncomfortable when I realized they had no locks on the doors. How could I trust my possessions would be safe without a lock for the door? But the way of life in this Highland village was much different than my American city, and soon, leaving my door unlocked felt more like the norm rather than the exception.

I spent quite a bit of time writing, going from room to room with my notebook and pen. I even sat in a comfortable chair in the lobby being warmed by the fire as I detailed my surroundings so I could use them in the book. I treated myself to a homemade scone and afternoon tea while I plotted my Highland love story. After dinner, I listened to locals in the pub with faint Scottish music playing in the background, and soon I too exchanged stories with the staff.

Sadly, I could only stay two nights. I had planned to take a boat ride on the loch, but the rain and cold weather (forcing me to wear my flannel pajamas in June!) prevented me from doing that. I did get a chance to walk down to the Glenfinnan Monument and to shop in its visitors’ center, but I chose to spend most of my time writing in the hotel. I had to find a way to share this place with my future readers.

As I stood waiting for the train back to Edinburgh, my heart squeezed a bit. The sun was shining, a slight breeze blew my hair, and tears stung the corners of my eyes. It may seem silly, but from the moment I first stepped off the train, I felt I had a connection to this Highland village with kind locals and gorgeous scenery. And you know what? I think a part of my heart stayed behind as the train chugged along the tracks, back toward the big city.

As soon as I returned home, I transformed my thirty handwritten pages of notes and scenes into my typed, organized romantic suspense story, Her Highland Champion. It took me a couple more years to revise it and find a home for it, but now I can share my “happy place” with readers everywhere. And someday I’ll make it back to Glenfinnan for that ride on the loch!



Here’s Alexa’s latest book, available in December.  

Tomorrow: Alexa Bourne

Tomorrow I’ll be guesting one of the truly nicest people I know, Alexa Bourne.  She’s also a terrific writer with a love of travel.   Teacher by day and a romantic suspense writer by night, she also teaches online classes for writers throughout the year. She now writers for  Decadent Publishing which gives her  the chance to share her love of Great Britain with readers everywhere.  Her three published books are:

SIMPLE TREASURES, available in December
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When she’s not concocting sinister plots or traveling and exploring new cultures, Alexa spends her time reading, watching brainless TV and thinking about exercising. She loves to interact with readers, so visit her web page, hang out at her blog, follow her on Twitter or drop her a note at Alexa@alexabourne.com!
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Fractured Paradise Book Blurb:
Technical analyst Rachel Grant arrives in Sunderland intent on tidying up her grandmother’s cottage, but the disaster she discovers requires more than a gentle sweep of a dust rag. Determined to please the most important person in her life, she trades her computer keyboard for a hammer and nails to make the repairs. She doesn’t count on the chilly reception from the locals who want to claim Nan’s home as their own.
Tour guide Aidan Camden wants to buy the cottage. He’s determined to acquire the property no matter how attractive he finds the current occupant. However, when tragedy strikes, throwing them both into a tailspin, he discovers he wants more than the house. He longs for the sexy American as well. Can Aidan put his own ghosts to rest in time to save the woman who’s claimed his heart?
Alexa Bourne~~~~ www.alexabourne.com


Yesterday–in case you haven’t noticed all the messages and blogs I’ve posted about this–was the release date for THE MATCHMAKERS OF BUTTERNUT CREEK.   That’s my ninth published book and the second in the Tales from Butternut Creek series.  When my sister-in-law called and said, “Are you celebrating?  Are you excited?”  I realized I was excited but not celebrating.  Too much to do on release day, one of them being looking for reviews and hoping people love the book.    Appearing on blogs has also distracted me.
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Two of my friends invited me to blog with them today.  I met Alison Stone of Twitter.  She’s an engineer and a writer–she blogged here a while back.   She’s now writing for Love Inspired Suspense.   She writes great suspense novels.
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I’ve know Alexa Bourne for years and through several noms de plume.    She’s a terrific writer who’s going to visit here soon with stories about Scotland.
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Please stop by and leave a message.  I’d love to see you there–and answer any questions.  Alexa will give away a copy of THE MATCHMAKERS.