Location, location, location. It’s all about location, which is why you may be wondering why I chose to locate The Ironspell Chroniclesin Denver, Colorado.
Denver, The Mile-High City
I spent a good portion of my youth and adult life in Denver, Colorado, which made it a prime target for a book series such as The Ironspell Chronicles. I got my degrees from the University of Denver, met my spouse, and got married there. And I spent a good portion of my town in the Front Range and the mountains nearby.
In other words, I know the area well.
But There Are Other Reasons for Choosing Denver
A lot of urban fantasy writers choose areas they’re comfortable with. Those cities include New York, Chicago, LA, Palo Alto, St. Louis, Kansas City, New Orleans, the Tri-Cities, etc. A good friend of mine, Gary Jonas, wrote his Jonathan Shade and Kelly Chan books in Denver. Although he’s enjoyed some real success with it, I wanted to place my stories in a world I was comfortable writing.
I feel that Denver isn’t used that much in Urban Fantasy–certainly it isn’t a place people think, gee, Harry Dresden has that town... In other words, I wanted to make Denver Ironspell’s home town.
That being said, yes, I know that Denver is the setting for the Kitty Norville series, but because I am writing a different type of series, I felt that Denver could be a good stomping ground for my protagonist who needed a bit more than just Denver to work in.
Lots of Plot Opportunities
Denver is just a stone’s throw away from the Rocky Mountains which gives me great places to include in my stories. I also know the history behind a lot of the places I’ve included, so it’s fun to incorporate them into my writing.
Got the final edits done today on Alchemist Rules! The new release date is September 6th, which is simply awesome! I’m so delighted the book is coming out. So, check it out, and check out the first chapter sneak peek of Alchemist Rules!
Supernaturals tend to go crazy on Mondays, and today was no exception. My partner, Officer Jim Douglas, just pulled our car into a typical Denver strip mall off Broadway and Evans and the fairies were out in force today. The little creatures were buzzing like mad hornets all along the sidewalks, causing what supernatural mayhem packs of six-inch-tall little people can do.
Normally, we wouldn’t bother to be here, but it was 10 p.m., which meant a visit to the local doughnut shop before they closed up. Yeah, laugh all you want, my partner is a stereotypical cop right down to the doughnuts. He had to have his sugar buzz, which meant fat bombs. It also meant I had to put up with his attitude since he was my fifth partner in four weeks. Right now, it was looking like he’d last the fifth week.
Even though it was a pleasant night for early April, the air was thick with smog and I decided to keep the windows up in the patrol car and avoid getting lung cancer. I’d run the air conditioner too, but it wasn’t that warm.
Instead, I picked up my book, Alchemy Magic for Beginners and leafed through the first pages until I found where I had put the book down last. The store front was so lit up, I could read the pages without the map light.
“Hey Cabbage,” Douglas jeered when he slammed the door, and swatted a Peter Pan looking creature away from his pocket protector. “Should I get you some doughnuts with sprinkles on them?”
“Ouch!” the fairy squeaked, flitting away.
I glared at Douglas. “It’s Bob. Bob Ironspell-Cabas.”
“Yeah, whatever, Cabbage.”
“Keep eating those doughnuts and they’ll be changing your name from Officer Jimmy Douglas to Officer Jimmy Dean in no time.” I added pig noises for dramatic effect.
Douglas, in his incredibly professional manner, flipped me off as he entered the doughnut shop. I thought about trying the new hex spell I read about in Alchemy Magic for Beginners, but instead flipped open my magazine of Alchemy Magic Today. Yeah, what can I say? The radio crackled as I perused the new spell of changing water into ice as a party trick.
“DPDS Car 51.”
I picked up the mic. “This is DPDS Car 51. Ironspell here.”
“Ironspell? You still in the vicinity of Washington Park?”
“Affirmative,” I said, trying to sound official.
“We got a supernatural disturbance in Washington Park. Do you copy?”
“Roger that. We’ll investigate.” I sighed and looked over at Douglas who was still at the counter trying to decide what fat bombs to buy. I tossed the magazine in the glove compartment and got out of our police cruiser. I then warded it locked. Specially made for those in the Denver Police Department Supernatural Unit, or DPDS, the car originally had been a Dodge Charger. The wards glowed and screamed to anyone with half a brain to not even think about opening it.
I ducked to avoid two fairies that nearly collided with me. Obviously lit from a sugar high. Both wore green Peter Pan type outfits—the latest rage among the current Supernatural little folk—and both were tugging on what was left of a frosted doughnut.
“Gimme that!” One shouted in a sharp little voice which promised to piece my eardrums.
“Mine! Mine! Mine!” The other shouted with a voice that could put nails on a chalkboard to shame. They tugged at the doughnut jerking back and forth while their wings were beating blindingly fast.
Some cops would’ve arrested them for disorderly conduct, but I couldn’t see being the big bully here. They weren’t driving, and they weren’t hurting anyone, no matter how annoying they might be. Once they sobered up, they’d be hit with the mother of all hangovers. Unless they started punching each other, it was just a typical night in fairyland. I walked into the doughnut shop, blindingly lit up to screw with my night vision. Douglas stood at the counter as the kid was ringing up the doughnuts.
“Can you do something about the bugs?” the kid waved at the fairies outside.
“Why, are they bothering you?” I asked.
“Yeah, they steal from the trash.”
“Maybe we’ll swat them,” Douglas said, pulling out his card to pay.
“We got other problems,” I said. “Dispatch came on.”
“Well, fuck.” Douglas picked up the bag of doughnuts and a coffee. I noted he didn’t bother to get me a coffee.
“Coffee?” I asked.
“What?” Douglas snapped, as we walked out the door.
“You owe me like…twenty cups,” I said, not bothering to hide my irritation as he walked to the driver’s side.
“Put it on my bill.” He shoved the bag of doughnuts into my hands and put the key in the door lock. It gave him a good zap. “Jesus fucking Christ, Cabbage! Do you have to do that? Most people settle on door locks, you know.”
“Oops,” I said, not feeling sorry. “You know it’s standard procedure.” I touched the car and the wards flashed, effectively neutralized. “Go ahead now.”
Douglas unlocked the car and climbed into the driver’s side. He reached for the doughnut bag, but I skittered out of reach. “Hey!” he said.
“Put it on my bill,” I said and whistled. “Hey guys! Want some doughnuts?” I shouted to the fairies.
Like moths to a flame, the little miscreants came out of hiding. Given how busy the intersection of Broadway and Evans was, I couldn’t believe how many appeared out of nowhere. Soon, I was surrounded by a swarm of hungry, buzzing fairies.
“Hey guys!” I shouted over the noise. “Quit harassing the customers around here, and I’ll give you free doughnuts on Mondays, okay?” I tossed the bag in the air. It never hit the ground.
One of the fairies flitted in front of my nose. “Is that a promise?”
“Yeah,” I said. “I’ll bring you some doughnuts.”
“Deal?” I asked.
“Deal!” They all shouted in their diminutive voices. They whirled around in the air, clinging to the doughnut bag like an angry bee swarm and disappeared into the night.
I got into the car. Douglas was on the radio. “10-4, we’ll be right there.” He glared at me. “You owe me for those doughnuts, Cabbage.”
“You owe me for the coffee. Consider that paid up.”
He shot me a look and started the car. Tonight was going to be fun, I could just tell.