The Tattered Slippers Collection continues to release apace! And, yes, I missed yesterday’s post due to technical slip-ups (shoves last-minute editing under the rug). But for now, I’ll proceed to today guest post from Tricia Mingerink, author of “Poison’s Dance – Beyond the Tales Book 3.” This series of Appalachian-inspired fairy tale retellings sounds charming and exciting. Not least because…
I am also extremely happy that the guest post includes pictures!
Synopsis and author bio and links at the bottom of the post. But without further ado, let’s get right to hearing from Tricia!
The Places of Tallahatchia – Guest Post by Tricia Mingerink
I enjoy hiking, especially in places with deep forest, mountains, and waterfalls. Over the past few years, I have hiked through places in Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, and North Carolina. All of those hikes provided a lot of the inspiration for my fictional kingdom of Tallahatchia.
The geography of Tallahatchia is loosely based on the Appalachian Mountains. Nearly all of the waterfalls mentioned in the books are based on waterfalls I’ve seen, though I took liberties in where I placed them in Tallahatchia. I didn’t try to line up the geography of Appalachia with my fictional Tallahatchia.
Waterfalls in Dagger’s Sleep
In Chapter 7 of Dagger’s Sleep, Rosanna and Daemyn see the Kikataw Falls. These fictional falls are based on the impressive and very real Cumberland Falls in Kentucky.
In Chapter 19 of Dagger’s Sleep, Alex and Jadon are led by the breeze along a turquoise stream to a waterfall unlike anything they have ever seen with turquoise water, orange rocks, and green foliage.
This is actually based on a real stream and waterfall in West Virginia. Douglas Falls is off an old railroad easement near Thomas, WV not that far from Blackwater Falls State Park.
The track follows the stream, which is a bright turquoise color due to coke smelting that even years later discolors the water and rocks. Whatever the cause, the colors are straight out of a fairy tale. I knew the moment I saw them I’d use them in a story someday, even if it took a few years.
This picture doesn’t do it justice. The water was such a contrast against the bright orange rocks. Just the sort of place you’d imagine a gateway into another realm.
Places in Midnight’s Curse
Most of Midnight’s Curse takes place in the kingdom of Pohatomie within Tallahatchia. Pohatomie is loosely based on the southern part of Ohio, especially the Hocking Hills region.
At the end of Midnight’s Curse, the characters journey from Pohatomie back to Kanawhee. In northern Kanawhee, they stop and find a sandbar by a waterfall where lots of minerals in the water make the water sparkle.
This is based on a real place in North Carolina. The small waterfall and sandbar are located along the hike to Rainbow Falls in Gorges State Park. Unfortunately, it was difficult to capture the sparkly water in a picture.
A local happened to be there when I was there and helped me and a friend safely crawl behind the waterfall like Rosanna and Daemyn did in Midnight’s Curse.
Places in Poison’s Dance
Since Poison’s Dance is a 12 Dancing Princesses tale, most of it happens in an underground room. So there were fewer places in that book based on real places in Appalachia.
But I did base the Rantahala Falls on Rainbow Falls in North Carolina. These falls are huge and impressive in real life.
If you want to ever visit Tallahatchia, simply take a walk through the Appalachian Mountains.
Beyond the Tales #3
If he falls to the lure of the curse, the dance might trap him forever.
Alex has survived his first year as high king. The new counsel has improved cooperation between the kingdoms, and peace seems achievable. When the Tuckawassee queen sends him an invitation he can’t refuse, Alex must once again face his greatest threat for the sake of peace.
Princess Tamya of Tuckawassee, along with her eleven sisters, has danced from sunset until sunrise every night of her life. It is her gift and her curse. When Queen Valinda wishes to use the power their cursed dance gives them to rule all of Tallahatchia, Tamya must decide if she will do what is right even if it betrays her own sister.
Daemyn Rand has survived a hundred years’ worth of battles. All he wants to do now is safely marry his princess. Will he be forced to choose between the love of his life and the high king he has loyally served for years?
They have faced certain death before. This time, they might not make it out alive.
Don’t miss this re-envisioning of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairy tale.
Add Book on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53251983-poison-s-dance?
Tricia Mingerink is a twenty-something, book-loving, horse-riding country girl. She lives in Michigan with her family and their pack of pets. When she isn’t writing, she can be found pursuing backwoods adventures across the country.