When Research = Travel
by Nancy Lee Badger
I recently returned from a long road trip that took me from Raleigh, North Carolina to the mountains of New Hampshire. Would you believe I have done this for many years? What my family and I do is volunteer at the NH Highland Games that take place every fall in Lincoln, NH. We used to live nearby, but I wanted to move south, to be closer to my family and be away from the snow. I promised my hubby we would come back and volunteer every year.
Years ago, research began the day I stood surrounded by thousands of kilted athletes, drum and bagpipe marching bands, and Scottish food. “I should write a book about this.” I did, and dozens of books later I still see something new, learn something different, or try a Scottish food I had never heard of. I call this ‘up close & personal’ research. There are just some things you cannot learn from books or the internet.
I would love to travel to Scotland and see, smell, hear, and taste everything, but when such trips are not feasible, attending Scottish Highland games will do. I realized shortly after moving to North Carolina that several such games are within 2-5 hours away. The Clan tents, the marching bands, and the visitors might look different, but they are all representing Scottish culture and I take pictures and make notes.
The pictures I share here are from this years New Hampshire Highland Games. Enjoy!
Book Blurb from Shimmer: The Beginning (set on the Isle of Skye)
On Scotland’s Isle of Skye, Robina uses her gifts to turn algae and muck into crystal clear fairy pools. A dark fairy chases her, while a black winged creature falls from the sky. One wants her body, the other claims her heart. Duff was dying, and his search for a mate looked doomed to failure. A pretty dragon knocks him off his feet. When she says she had simply transformed her shape in order to meet him, his heart breaks. Human hunters and the dark fairy threaten them, while love erupts between them. How will two very different otherworldly creatures co-exist?
Here are links to my favorite Scottish Highland Games:
Nancy Lee Badger loves chocolate-chip shortbread, wool plaids wrapped around the trim waist of a Scottish Highlander, the clang of broadswords, and the sound of bagpipes in the air. After growing up in Huntington, New York, and raising two handsome sons in New Hampshire, Nancy moved to North Carolina where she writes full-time. Nancy is a member of Romance Writers of America, Heart of Carolina Romance Writers, Fantasy-Futuristic & Paranormal Romance Writers, and the Triangle Association of Freelancers, and volunteers each fall at the New Hampshire Highland Games surrounded by…kilts!
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