The Christmas Calamity Visuals and More!

The Christmas Calamity CoverIn all the excitement last week, I didn’t get around to posting visuals like I usually do for a new book. I also didn’t give you some of the fun little details that I often share. Sorry!

The Christmas Calamity (Hardman Holidays, Book 3) is the story of Arlan Guthry, a somewhat studious banker’s assistant, and Alexandra (Alex) Janowski, a magician by trade who also happens to have experience as a teacher. When her wagon breaks down just outside of Hardman, Arlan offers a helping hand and soon finds himself fighting an attraction for the free-spirited, beautiful woman.

I like to think Alex and Arlan bring out the best in each other, whether they realize it or not. Arlan needs his neatly ordered world tipped off kilter a bit and Alex needs the steady influence Arlan provides. Below is one of my favorite quotes from the book.

The-Christmas-Calamity-quoteBelow, I’ll share some of the visuals I used while writing the story, but before I get to them, I thought I’d share the song I think of as Alex and Arlan’s.

Mean to Me by Brett Eldredge

I don’t know why, but it just makes me think of them.

Without further ado, meet Alex and Arlan…

ARlan attiredAlex 2

Since Arlan made appearances in the first two books in the series, we already knew a little about him. We knew he was handsome, a hard worker, that he was friends with the Granger family, and a respectable citizen of Hardman. We also knew he was alone and maybe a little lonely.

Arlan  takes his job at the bank quite seriously, loves math, and is one of the kindest characters I think I’ve created. He likes to dress well in finely tailored waistcoats and top coats, but growing up on a farm, he still has a little country boy in him.

Alex is somewhat unconventional, accustomed to living a nomadic lifestyle as a traveling magician (or prestidigitator, as she prefers to be called).

More than a year ago, I happened across the word “prestidigitator” and knew I had to work it into a story. I love the way it sounds, rolling off the tongue. It’s just one of those words that is so, so fun to say. In fact, there are several fun words in the book, but I’ll let you find them yourself!

Anyway, Alex comes from a long line of magicians, even though it would not have been her first choice for an occupation. She grew up wanting to be a teacher and even held a position for a few months before her father decided to take their magician wagon and travel the country. After he dies, she continues the trade. On her way to spend the winter in California, her wagon breaks down in seemingly the middle of nowhere, although it is just a few miles from Hardman. Arlan happens upon her and is immediately entranced by the beautiful woman dressed in pants!

For Arlan, the first visual that came to mind was Armie Hammer.

armie 3He’s tall and handsome, but has kind eyes and a warm smile, just like I picture Arlan.

armieCan’t you just envision Arlan looking like this?

Armie 1Or this? Yep, Armie was the perfect Arlan.

Jaimie-Alexander2Jaimie Alexander immediately came to mind when I thought of Alex’s character. She played Lady Sif in the Thor movies. Although she is beautiful, she’s also tough.

Jaimie AlexanderAnd that is exactly what I needed for my lady magician.

jamiealexanderFrom her dark hair to her lively hazel eyes, Jaimie was everything I envisioned for Alex’s character.

card trickI found this old Garland Stoves ad that had a magic trick listed on the back side. How fun is this. It helped me think about tricks that might have been “astounding and amazing” back in the late 1800s.

wagon 2For about five minutes I thought about using this as the book cover, but the wheels on the wagon are funky and it looks more like spring to me than winter.

Snowy background 2So I went with this photo that was actually taken near Hardman. I added the snow, and from there, the photo worked quite well!

In case you’ve forgotten the other characters from the series,

 

Ginny Granger (Brooke White)Brooke White is exactly how I envision Ginny Granger.

Dylan Bruce (Blake)Dylan Bruce fit the bill for our handsome British Blake Stratton.

Luke Granger The good-looking Myles Pollard was my choice for Luke Granger.

Filly GrangerThe gorgeous Amanda Righetti is how I picture Filly Granger.

(Reminds me of Maura from The Christmas Calamity) Strawberry blonde baby.  Smocked gown.

And we can’t forget baby Maura. (And if you missed the reference, she’s named after Filly’s mother, Maureen.)

1800's schoolroom decorated for Christmas

Alex’s classroom.

#Victorian parlor. | VICTORIAN DECOR

The parlor at Granger House.

Beautiful Victorian stairway

The staircase at Dora and Greg Granger’s new home, decked for the holidays.

For more fun visuals, check out the book board on Pinterest_Logo

You can also get more detail by clicking on these links: Meet Arlan and Alex

The book is available in both Kindle and paperback!

Kindle

Amazon

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Happy Reading!

 

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