The Writer's View: Chris O'Guinn

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The Writer's View

What do I see out my window right now? I see the autumn colors, which I just love. I come from the land of eternal sunshine. The only time plants change color in Southern California is when someone forgets to water them. The trees here are now breathtaking with their glimmering golds and their flaming reds. This was the time of year my wife and I visited Spokane and the fall colors were part of what drew us here to start our new life.

Spokane is truly a beautiful city and that’s not something I am accustomed to saying about a city. After all, a city is just a collection of buildings, a utilitarian jumble where we silly humans go about our work and our play.

Spokane is an old city, dating back to the late 1800’s. The first little town they built burned to the ground, which always reminds me of a Monty Python sketch. “They all said I was mad to build a castle in the middle of a swamp, but I built it anyway. And it sank into the swamp. So I built another one. And that one burned down and then sank into the swamp....”

Well, Spokane didn’t sink into the swamp. It thrived. But the thing about old cities, they tend to either hide their age with a facelift—tear down the old and put in the new—or they just look tired and neglected.

Spokane, though, wears its age well. A massive renovation in the seventies made all the old buildings look new again. The city has kept that up, preserving buildings that get torn down in bigger cities. It’s like walking through history. It really helps kickstart my creativity, being surrounded by a city that seems to have so many fascinating stories to tell. Just imagining all the lives that have been lived here is sort of amazing.

We have a river flowing through the city. I love to walk the bridges that span it and listen to the roaring of the water as it crashes over the rocks. It’s very soothing. I can stand there and stare at the river for ages. It’s like having a nature walk right in your backyard.

When the weather is favorable, I can walk down to Riverfront Park with my laptop and soak in the sunlight as I work on my latest story. The ducks, of course, insist on you paying tribute, but they’re polite about it. The squirrels, though, will beat you up and take your lunch just for looking at them.

Spokane is an inspiring place. In fact, my first YA book, Exiled to Iowa. Send Help. And Couture. was conceived partly because of the small town feeling here. I thought it would be funny to transplant a trendy, hip teen to a little town and watch him cope.

It’s not for everyone. But I love this little city. Short of the little cottage in England that I dream of one day owning and living in, I think it’s the perfect place for a writer.

About the Author:
I’ve been writing since I was fifteen, not that those stories will ever be allowed out of the dark hole I buried them in. I focused primarily on the Fantasy genre for the first two decades, occasionally diverting into modern fiction. In 2010, I embarked in a self-publishing career, focusing on the young adult novel genre. When I’m not writing, I am contributing to, a gay entertainment website.

You can follow me on Facebook and you can keep up to date with my works via

At fifteen, Justin is already a cynic. He’s experienced too many betrayals, too many disappointments. He doesn’t want to be involved in anything. He doesn’t want to be popular. He doesn’t even want friends anymore, since they only ever let you down. He just wants to get through high school and the best way he can come up with to accomplish that goal is to simply be invisible.

His self-imposed exile from high school life is threatened when Liam, the scary stoner, reaches out to him. What starts out as a strange and unsettling encounter with the unnerving, pot-smoking teenager evolves into the sort of friendship that changes the course of a person’s life.

But as Liam drags the reluctant Justin out of his shell, Liam’s own secret is revealed.

Fearless is the story of the myriad shades of love, how to find one’s courage and the transformative power of friendship.


Thank you for hosting
Chris OGuinn said…
Thank you for hosting.
Urb said…
Late 1800s is not old for a city, is it? I'd love to visit Spokane, it sounds lovely!
Rita said…
Great post, I enjoyed your view.

MomJane said…
Spokane sounds absolutely beautiful. What a wonderful place to live.
Eva Millien said…
Thanks for sharing the writer's view and the giveaway. Sounds like a really good book. evamillien at gmail dot com
Natasha D said…
Great post!
Spokane sounds very beautiful!
Thanks for the chance to win!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com
Mary Preston said…
It all sounds so beautiful. I love the Autumn colors too.

Sierra McBride said…
Love your 'Writer's View' Autumn is my favorite Season of all.
Thank you for the info and giveaway !

stamper_sierra [at] yahoo [dot] com
Andra Lyn said…
Hi Chris :)

How important is the setting to your stories? Does it matter? or is it the characters who really make a story great?

andralynn7 AT gmail DOT com